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Rail News: Rail Industry Trends

AAR: Rail traffic numbers continue to improve


For the week ending May 8, U.S. weekly rail traffic totaled 523,309 carloads and intermodal units, up 26.9% compared with the same week last year, according to Association of American Railroads (AAR) data.

Carloads for the week reached 236,019, up 27.6%, while U.S. weekly intermodal volume climbed 26.3% to 287,290 containers and trailers. 

All 10 carload commodity groups tracked by the AAR posted year-over-year gains. They included coal, up 16,361 carloads, to 62,675; metallic ores and metals, up 9,925 carloads, to 23,543; and motor vehicles and parts, up 9,221 carloads, to 11,327. 

Meanwhile, Canadian railroads reported 75,952 carloads for the week, up 12%, and 77,487 intermodal units, up 12.1%. Mexican railroads reported 20,442 carloads for the week, up 33.8%, and 15,688 intermodal units, up 12.8%.

For the first 18 weeks of 2021 compared with the same period in 2020:
• U.S. railroads hauled 9,179,744 carloads and intermodal units, up 11.3%;
• Canadian railroads hauled 2,727,941 carloads, containers and trailers, up 7.5%; and
• Mexican railroads hauled 656,876 carloads and intermodal containers and trailers, up 5.2%.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

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