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Rail News: Rail Industry Trends

U.S. rail traffic grew 5 percent in Week 28


U.S. railroads reported a 5 percent increase in carload and intermodal traffic for the week ending July 14 compared with the same week a year ago, according to the Association of American Railroads (AAR).

Total carloads for the week rose 3.8 percent to 271,207 units, while intermodal volume climbed 6.1 percent to 287,857 containers and trailers compared with the year-ago period, AAR officials said in a press release.

Eight of the 10 carload commodity groups that AAR tracks on a weekly basis posted increases compared with the same week last year. They included motor vehicles and parts, up 2,772 carloads to 15,076; petroleum and petroleum products, up 2,609 carloads to 11,950; and grain, up 1,976 carloads to 24,779.

The two commodities that logged carload decreases for the week compared with last year were coal, down 1,909 units to 84,511; and farm products (excluding grain) and food, down 165 units to 16,353.

Meanwhile, Canadian railroads posted 82,620 carloads for the week, up 9.3 percent, and 68,170 intermodal units, up 1.8 percent compared with the same week in 2017.  Mexican railroads logged 21,082 carloads for the week, down 1.9 percent compared with the same week last year, and 18,063 intermodal units, down 4.6 percent.

For the first 28 weeks of this year:
• U.S. railroads' combined traffic was 14,945,228 carloads and intermodal units, up 3.9 percent compared to last year;
• Canadian railroads' cumulative rail traffic was 4,133,176 carloads, containers and trailers, up 3.8 percent compared with the same period in 2017; and
• Mexican railroads' cumulative volume was 1,069,719 carloads and intermodal containers and trailers.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

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