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Railroads doled out slightly fewer damage/loss payments in 2002, AAR says


Last year, North American railroads' loss and damage claim payments decreased slightly, according to Association of American Railroads' 2002 "Freight Loss & Damage Report." Nine reporting U.S. and Canadian roads paid $142.4 million in claims last year compared with $146.1 million in 2001.

Roads' percentage of revenue used to pay claims also dropped — from 0.34 percent in 2001 to 0.33 percent in 2002.

Last year's loss and damage claims were about half of those made in 1980, when roads paid out $285 million or 1.1 percent of their total revenue, AAR said.

Also in 2002, the number of new claims dropped 19.6 percent, and 84 percent of all claims were settled within 30 days, rising 66 percent compared with 2001.

The top five paid-claim causes and totals last year were train accidents, $50.5 million; "all damage not otherwise provided," $47.5 million; robbery, theft and pilferage, $11.4 million; defective equipment, $10.1 million; and temperature failure, $9.7 million.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

More News from 9/15/2003