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AAR: U.S. rail traffic down a bit in Week No. 38


U.S. rail traffic numbers continued to tell a familiar story in Week No. 38: Carloads were down, while intermodal volumes were up, according to the Association of American Railroads (AAR).

For the week ending Sept. 26, U.S. railroads logged 285,856 carloads, down 5.4 percent, and 280,844 containers and trailers, up 2.1 percent, compared with the same week in 2014. Total U.S. rail traffic for the week was 566,700 carloads and intermodal units, a 1.8 percent decline compared with the same week last year.

Four of the 10 carload commodity groups posted increases for the week. They include: Grain, up 30.1 percent to 22,232 carloads; miscellaneous carloads, up 14 percent to 10,100; and motor vehicles and parts, up 8.7 percent to 18,727.

Commodity groups that posted decreases compared with the same week a year ago included: petroleum and petroleum products, down 22.3 percent to 13,014 carloads; coal, down 14.2 percent to 101,561 carloads; and metallic ores and metals, down 10.4 percent to 24,128 carloads.

For the first 38 weeks of this year, U.S. railroads’ cumulative carload volume fell 4.4 percent to 10,590,411 carloads, but intermodal volumes rose 2.5 percent to 10,135,249 units.

Canadian railroads posted 74,779 carloads for the week, down 13.8 percent, and 63,492 intermodal units, up 1.6 percent compared with the same week in 2014. For the first 38 weeks of 2015, Canadian railroads reported cumulative rail traffic volume of 5,237,021 carloads, containers and trailers, up 0.1 percent.

Mexican railroads reported 17,693 carloads for the week, up 25.7 percent compared with the same week last year, and 13,785 intermodal units, up 13.8 percent. Cumulative volume on Mexican railroads for the first 38 weeks of 2015 was 1,036,354 carloads and intermodal containers and trailers, up 2.6 percent from the same point last year, according to AAR.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

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