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Rail News: Intermodal

Houston and Vancouver ports set container records in 2013


The Port of Houston Authority last week noted that it set container volume and cargo tonnage records in 2013.

Container volume reached an all-time-high 2 million 20-foot equivalent units (TEUs) and cargo totaled "an unprecedented" 36 million tons, authority officials said in a press release.

A 6 percent year-over-year increase in loaded container movements outpaced all other U.S. ports in that category, they said. The port is served by BNSF Railway Co., Kansas City Southern, Union Pacific Railroad and the Port Terminal Railroad Association, which provides switching services.

In addition, grain and coal export gains helped the port post a 13 percent increase in bulk cargo to 11 million tons last year.

Port Metro Vancouver also set new container and cargo records in 2013. Container volume climbed 4 percent to a new all-time-high 2.83 million TEUs, as imports increased 3.9 percent and exports rose 4.4 percent year over year.

The port also handled a new record of 135 million tons of total cargo, up 9 percent compared with 2012's total. Bulk cargo volumes climbed 11 percent, buoyed by coal and grain traffic gains, port officials said in a press release.

The port — which handles 19 percent of Canada's total trade — is served by CN, Canadian Pacific, BNSF and Southern Railway of British Columbia, the local service provider.

“Another year of growth at Port Metro Vancouver provides ongoing proof of the strength of the Canadian economy, and the success of our trade development focused policies and infrastructure investments,” said Canadian Minister of Transport Lisa Raitt.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

More News from 2/25/2014