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Rail News: Rail Industry Trends

U.S. rail traffic up a bit in Week 40


U.S. rail traffic rose 1.2 percent to 554,238 carloads and intermodal units for the week ending Oct. 6 compared with the traffic during the same week a year ago, according to Association of American Railroads (AAR) data.

Railroads reported 269,634 total carloads for the week, up 0.7 percent compared with the same week in 2017. Intermodal volume inched up 1.8 percent to 284,604 containers and trailers compared with a year ago, according to an AAR press release.

Six of the 10 carload commodity groups that AAR follows on a weekly basis posted increases. They included petroleum and petroleum products, up 2,579 carloads to 12,545; coal, up 1,250 carloads to 88,939; and metallic ores and metals, up 880 carloads to 22,121.

Commodity groups that posted decreases compared with the same week in 2017 included grain, down 1,918 carloads to 22,641; nonmetallic minerals, down 1,557 carloads to 37,581; and miscellaneous carloads, down 154 carloads to 9,860.

Meanwhile, Canadian railroads reported 85,997 carloads for the week, up 4 percent, and 70,135 intermodal units, down 2.3 percent compared with the same week in 2017. Mexican railroads reported 19,608 carloads for the week, down 3.2 percent compared with the same week last year, and 20,427 intermodal units, down 1 percent.

For the first 40 weeks of 2018:
• U.S. railroads logged 21,634,801 carloads and intermodal units, an increase of 3.9 percent compared to last year;
• Canadian railroads reported cumulative rail traffic volume of 6,000,438 carloads, containers and trailers, up 3.7 percent; and
• Mexican railroads posted cumulative volume of 1,546,766 carloads and intermodal containers and trailers.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

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