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5/25/2004



Rail News: Rail Industry Trends

AAR traffic data: U.S. roads still on a traffic roll


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U.S. railroads continue to ramp up traffic volume. During the week ending May 15, the roads increased carloads and intermodal loads 5 percent and 7.9 percent, respectively, compared with similar 2003 data, according to the Association of American Railroads. Estimated total weekly volume of 31.6 billion ton-miles rose 6 percent.

During 2004's first 19 weeks, U.S. roads moved 6,343,330 carloads, up 3.4 percent, and 3,838,319 trailers and containers, up 7.9 percent compared with the same 2003 period's traffic. Estimated total volume of 571.4 billion ton-miles rose 4.9 percent.

Canadian railroads increased weekly carloads 10.3 percent to 69,576 units, but intermodal loads totaling 44,039 units dropped 1.5 percent compared with similar 2003 data.

During the year's first 19 weeks, Canadian roads moved 1,289,433 carloads, up 7.6 percent, and 778,214 trailers and containers, down 0.3 percent compared with last year.

On a combined cumulative-volume basis through 19 weeks, 15 reporting U.S. and Canadian roads moved 7,632,763 carloads and 4,616,533 intermodal loads, a 4.1 percent and 6.4 percent increase, respectively, compared with similar 2003 data.

Meanwhile, Mexico's TFM S.A. de C.V. experienced another dismal week. The road's 8,222 carloads and 2,545 intermodal loads during the week ending May 15 represented 6.8 percent and 30.4 percent drops, respectively, compared with the same 2003 week's data. Through 19 weeks, TFM moved 158,511 carloads, down 4.7 percent, and 61,217 trailers and containers, down 11 percent compared with last year.


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