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Rail News: Rail Industry Trends

AAR: North American rail traffic grew in Week 24


U.S. railroads moved 543,179 carloads and intermodal units during the week ending June 17, a 5.2 percent increase over the same week a year ago, the Association of American Railroads (AAR) reported yesterday.

Total carloads for the week rose 6.2 percent to 266,402 units, while total intermodal volume climbed 4.3 percent to 276,777 containers and trailers compared with traffic for the period last year.

Six of the 10 carloads AAR tracks on a weekly basis logged increases for the week. They included nonmetallic minerals, up 15.5 percent to 39,654 carloads; coal, up 15.1 percent to 87,066 carloads; and chemicals, up 5.7 percent to 31,288 carloads.

Commodity groups that posted decreases compared with the same week in 2016 included petroleum and petroleum products, down 12.4 percent to 9,326 carloads; motor vehicles and parts, down 8.1 percent to 17,189 carloads; and grain, down 4.6 percent to 21,677 carloads.

Meanwhile, Canadian railroads reported 78,763 carloads for the week, up 17.1 percent, and 67,962 intermodal units, up 17.8 percent compared with the same week in 2016.

Mexican railroads also reported higher traffic volume during the week compared with a year ago: Carload traffic rose 6.4 percent to 18,234 units, while intermodal volume grew 10 percent to 12,066 containers and trailers.

For the first 24 weeks of 2017, U.S. railroads posted cumulative volume of 12,501,071 carloads and intermodal units, an increase of 4.6 percent compared with the same period last year.

Year over year for the 24-week period, Canadian railroads reported cumulative volume of 3,418,962 carloads, containers and trailers, up 11.6 percent; Mexican railroads reported cumulative volume of 644,145 carloads and intermodal containers and trailers, down 1.4 percent.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

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