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With its volumes up 2% so far this quarter, Union Pacific Railroad has pulled nearly 3,000 of its own rail cars out of storage to begin adding unit trainsets to support customer demand.
"We are closely monitoring our operating inventory level to make sure it's climbing at a comparable rate with our carloadings," UP Executive Vice President of Marketing and Sales Kenny Rocker reported in an Aug. 18 notice to customers. "Most of the volume growth is within our manifest network, and it is important that we avoid excess rail-car inventories, especially in our terminals."
To increase network fluidity, UP has focused on the following areas:
• graduated 597 train, engine and yard service (TEY) employees so far in 2022, which is on track to meet the year-end goal of 1,400;
• temporarily relocated more than 200 TEY employees for borrow out service to support demand;
• maximized train length and improved crew utilization; and
• reassessed the pace UP-owned cars are returned to service.
"We are making steady progress on our service recovery," Rocker said, adding that customers are asked to avoid adding excess cars onto UP's network.
By eliminating an excess car inventory and pursuing other resource initiatives, the railroad gains the ability to improve service for all customers, he said.