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Rail News: Rail Industry Trends

Intermodal volume lifts U.S. rail traffic total in Week 6


U.S. rail traffic in the week ending Feb. 10 totaled 484,840 carloads and intermodal units, up 4.5% compared with the same week last year, according to the Association of American Railroads (AAR).

Carloads totaled 220,362 carloads, down 2.5%, while intermodal volume totaled 264,478 containers and trailers, up 11.1%.

Five of the 10 carload commodity groups tracked weekly by the AAR posted an increase compared with the same week in 2023. They included chemicals, up 5.9%; motor vehicles and parts, up 13.3%; and grain, up 8.5%.

Commodity groups that posted declines included coal at 10.5%, nonmetallic minerals at 10.5% and miscellaneous carloads at 11.6%.

Canadian railroads reported 92,811 carloads for the week, down 0.5%, and 69,516 intermodal units, up 2.9% year over year. 

Mexican railroads reported 16,585 carloads, up 9.1%, and 11,071 intermodal units, down 2.3%.

For the first six weeks of 2024 compared with the same week in 2023:
• U.S. railroads logged 2,716,022 carloads and intermodal units, up 0.2%;
• Canadian railroads reported 905,968 carloads, containers and trailers, down 4.7%; and
• Mexican railroads posted 153,406 carloads and intermodal units, up 5.9%.