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Rail News: Rail Industry Trends

U.S., Canadian rail traffic gains continue


U.S. railroads posted a 6.2 percent increase in rail traffic for the week ending June 10 compared with the same week a year ago, the Association of American Railroads (AAR) reported yesterday.

During Week 23, total U.S. carload and intermodal traffic was 545,317 units. Carload volume rose 7.1 percent to 265,717 units, while intermodal volume climbed 5.3 percent to 279,600 containers and trailers compared with the same week in 2016, according to an AAR press release.

Five of the 10 commodity groups that AAR tracks every week logged increases compared with a year ago. They included coal, up 16.7 percent to 85,516 carloads; nonmetallic minerals, up 13.6 percent to 39,867 carloads; and grain, up 10.4 percent to 22,409 carloads.

Commodity groups that posted decreases for the week included petroleum and petroleum products, down 11.3 percent to 9,601 carloads; motor vehicles and parts, down 5.7 percent to 17,776 carloads; and farm products excluding grain, and food, down 4.2 percent to 15,857 carloads.

Canadian railroads reported 77,599 carloads for the week, an increase of 13.3 percent, and 68,826 intermodal units, up 18.3 percent compared with the same week in 2016.

Mexican railroads posted 17,437 carloads for the week, a decline of just 0.1 percent compared with the same week in 2016. Mexican railroads' intermodal volume rose 2.1 percent to 11,907 units.

For the first 23 weeks of 2017, U.S. railroads logged a cumulative volume of 11,957,892 carloads and intermodal units compared with 2016. Canadian railroads' combined total volume was 3,272,237 carloads, containers and trailers, up 11.3 percent compared with a year ago.

Mexican railroads' total traffic volume for the first 23 weeks of 2017 slipped 1.8 percent to 613,845 carloads and intermodal containers and trailers compared with volume during the same period in 2016.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

More News from 6/15/2017