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Rail News Home Rail Industry Trends

9/15/2008



Rail News: Rail Industry Trends

Ike wreaks havoc with four Class Is' operations


Like Hurricane Gustav two weeks before it, Hurricane Ike left an imprint on rail infrastructure along the U.S. Gulf Coast.

After hammering large portions of Texas and some parts of Louisiana over the weekend, the storm prompted Kansas City Southern to close segments of its mainline between Dallas, and Vicksburg, Miss., because of floodwaters, damage and debris. Prior to the hurricane, KCS embargoed traffic for Beaumont and Port Arthur, Texas, including interchanges with Union Pacific Railroad and BNSF Railway Co. in Beaumont, and UP in Port Arthur. KCS also issued traffic embargoes in other parts of Texas.

UP also shut down portions of a line between Dallas and Shreveport, La., because of signal outages and numerous fallen trees lying across tracks. The Class has suspended all operations into and out of Houston, which was pummeled by the storm.

Because of KCS' and UP's line closures, Norfolk Southern Railway issued an alert to intermodal customers to expect transit delays from 24 to 48 hours on traffic moving between Atlanta, Shreveport, Dallas and Los Angeles.

Meanwhile, BNSF closed its Houston and Barbour's Cut intermodal and automotive facilities until crews evaluate infrastructure conditions. The Class I's New Orleans terminal is operating normally. BNSF also closed a portion of its mainline near Marceline, Mo., because of high water caused by heavy Ike-related rains. Traffic is being rerouted around the area, affecting trains heading to and from Kansas City, Mo., L.A. and Fort Worth, Texas, BNSF said.


Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

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