Shifts to all-water moves dragged down intermodal traffic last year, report says (2/6/2008)


Intermodal revenue moves in December tumbled 11 percent from November's level, representing continued weak performance for the intermodal segment through 2007's end, according to a monthly intermodal report issued by FTR Associates and Gross Transportation Consulting.

For the year, revenue movements totaled 14.1 million, a 1.1 percent decrease compared with 2006's total.

Intermodal freight shifts to all-water movements served as a "significant drag" on intermodal volume in key long-haul lanes last year, the report states.

"Substantial amounts of import freight that previously landed on the West Coast and moved East via long-haul 'transcon' intermodal is now landing on the East Coast," said Gross Transportation founder and intermodal report author Larry Gross in a prepared statement. "The trend is most acute in the southern U.S."

Because international equipment moves via rail will remain weak during the next few quarters, total intermodal loadings in 2008 will increase only 1.6 percent vs. 2007, FTR and Gross Transportation predict.

Source: Progressive Railroading Daily News