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Rail News: Rail Industry Trends

Weak economy doesn't modify second-quarter intermodal moves, IANA says


The second quarter wasn't a good one for North America's economy, but it wasn't a bad three months for intermodal traffic.

Second-quarter intermodal traffic nearly was level with second-quarter 2000 figures, and for the second consecutive quarter domestic container traffic exceeded trailer moves, according to Intermodal Association of North America's (IANA) Rail Intermodal Traffic Report, which complies data from North America's six largest railroads.

Second-quarter international container traffic rose 3.1 percent while domestic container moves dropped slightly compared with 2000's second quarter.

On an intermodal-corridor basis, the Midwest/Southeast corridor's traffic grew 11 percent and the South Central/Southwest corridor's, 6.3 percent, IANA says, according to a prepared statement.
IANA believes the rise in container traffic, and railroads' intermodal service and capacity improvements have helped build traffic growth.

For example, Norfolk Southern Railway recently opened Port of Savannah, Ga., and Cleveland terminals to handle international traffic; Kansas City Southern Railway, The Texas Mexican Railway and Transportatció:n Ferroviaria Mexicana S.A. de C.V. earlier this year created a NAFTA express intermodal service between U.S. points, and either Laredo, Texas, or Mexico City; and Canadian Pacific Railway recently announced plans to expand and upgrade Toronto, Chicago and Calgary, Alberta, terminals.