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AAR schedules fall peak forum No. 2 to keep railroads, shippers on same page

Last year, U.S. railroads increased carload and intermodal traffic 7.2 percent and 10.4 percent, respectively, compared with 2003. With 2005 nearly half over, the roads are ahead of last year’s pace, according to Association of American Railroads (AAR) data.

But burgeoning traffic could lead to congestion and bottlenecks during the fall peak — problems some shippers experienced during last year’s peak freight-moving season. For the second-straight year, the AAR has scheduled a customer service forum so shippers can learn what to expect from railroads during the fall peak and railroads can address shippers’ concerns.

To be held Sept. 21 from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. at the Renaissance St. Louis Hotel, the "North American Railroads Customer Forum" will include presentations by senior marketing and/or operations officers from each Class I, remarks from American Short Line and Regional Railroad Association President Richard Timmons and Surface Transportation Board Chairman Roger Nober, and a shipper question-and-answer session moderated by AAR President and Chief Executive Officer Edward Hamberger.

“Before [last year’s] forum, there were predictions that railroads wouldn't be able to handle the volumes of freight that would develop from an expanding economy, [but] those predictions were flat out wrong,” said Hamberger in a prepared statement. “One of the reasons was that we kept open lines of communication between railroads and rail customers.”

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More News from 6/22/2005