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Rail News Home Rail Industry Trends

9/23/2005



Rail News: Rail Industry Trends

Hurricane not a hindrance: U.S. roads set two weekly traffic-volume records, AAR says


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So far, Hurricane Katrina hasn’t slowed down U.S. railroads’ traffic-building momentum. Although some Gulf Region traffic still is being re-routed because of storm-ravaged infrastructure, U.S. roads set two weekly volume records the week ending Sept. 17, according to the Association of American Railroads.

The roads’ total estimated volume of 34.6 billion ton-miles bested the 33.8 billion ton-miles recorded during the week ending July 30, and intermodal loads totaling 244,897 trailers and containers surpassed the 238,961 loads moved during the week ending Nov. 20, 2004.

U.S. roads boosted weekly carloads, too. During the week ending Sept. 17, the roads moved 350,841 carloads, a 3.4 percent increase compared with the same 2004 week.

Year to date (through 2005’s first 37 weeks), U.S. roads moved 12.3 million carloads, up 1.5 percent, and 8.1 million trailers and containers, up 6.3 percent compared with the same 2004 period. Total estimated volume of 1.18 trillion ton-miles rose 2.4 percent.

Canadian railroads also posted solid weekly traffic figures. During the week ending Sept. 17, the roads’ carloads totaling 78,731 units and intermodal loads totaling 46,712 units increased 0.3 percent and 6.7 percent, respectively, compared with the same 2004 week.

Through 37 weeks, Canadian roads moved 2.8 million carloads, down 0.4 percent, and 1.5 million trailers and containers, up 2.9 percent compared with 2004’s first 37 weeks.

On a combined cumulative-volume basis through 37 weeks, reporting U.S. and Canadian railroads moved 15.1 million carloads, up 1.1 percent, and 9.7 million intermodal loads, up 5.7 percent compared with the same 2004 period.

In Mexico, TFM S.A. de C.V. remains in a carload slump. During the week ending Sept. 17, the railroad’s carloads dropped 9.4 percent to 7,969 units compared with the same 2004 week. However, TFM’s weekly intermodal loads rose 10.7 percent to 3,352 units. Through 37 weeks, TFM moved 312,401 carloads, down 1.8 percent, and 141,125 trailers and containers, up 4.6 percent compared with the same 2004 period.


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