Rail & Intermodal

There are seven Class I railroads in the U.S. that haul the largest share of domestic and international goods: BNSF Railway and Union Pacific Railroad in the West, CSX Transportation and Norfolk Southern in the East, Canadian National and Canadian Pacific and Kansas City Southern Railway. Along with regional short line carriers, these railroads haul a variety of bulk and retail goods, from coal and grain to consumer goods.

Intermodal transportation by rail is on the agenda at the JOC’s inaugural Inland Distribution Conference in Kansas City, Mo., on Sept. 18-19, 2013. Learn more about the conference.

News & Analysis

23 Apr 2014
Canadian Pacific Railway said it is increasing its domestic intermodal volume at a pace that by the end of the year will more than offset the loss of three container line contracts.
22 Apr 2014
The Port of Tacoma is working with the two western railroads, its local provider (Tacoma Rail), cargo transloaders, Washington State exporters and trans-Pacific ocean carriers to enhance intermodal rail service from the port.
Union Pacific Railroad locomotives in Santa Teresa, N.M.
21 Apr 2014
SANTA TERESA, N.M. — There’s not much out here other than roads, warehouses and cacti — and now a sprawling Union Pacific Railroad intermodal terminal and fueling station. Secluded as it is, what happens at this $400 million facility in a desert framed by mountains ripples through UP’s 32,000-mile U.S. network and taps into one of the largest trends in transportation rail: domestic rail growth.
17 Apr 2014
Kansas City Southern Railway appears confident the Mexican government won’t require it to open up its track to competitors as legislation had threatened last fall.
16 Apr 2014
U.S. rail traffic is returning to normal after one of the coldest winters in recent memory, Bradley Thrasher, vice president and general manager of industrial products at the Union Pacific Railroad, told the Los Angeles Transportation Club April 15.
16 Apr 2014
CSX Transportation said rail service will “gradually” improve and that it was reasonable to expect operations to return to normal by the end of June, following a harsh winter that snarled operations and created a backlog of freight.
15 Apr 2014
J.B. Hunt Transport Services appears back on track for intermodal growth, reflecting a broader pickup in intermodal following delays, disruptions and depressed volumes in the first quarter blamed on severe weather.
11 Apr 2014
TUCSON, Ariz. — Intermodal service delays at Union Pacific Railway and CSX Transportation will end in roughly two to four weeks following a harsh winter that wrecked havoc on the railroads’ networks, rail representatives said at a conference on April 10.
10 Apr 2014
Bulk rail shippers ranging from agriculture to coal producers told the U.S. Surface Transportation Board today that poor rail service must be solved before their business suffers even more.
10 Apr 2014
The Senate yesterday confirmed President Obama’s nomination to the Surface Transportation Board, thrusting Debra Miller into the rail regulatory agency as it grapples with a myriad of issues.
09 Apr 2014
Shippers moved more freight and spent more to do so in March and the first quarter, despite weather-related supply chain disruptions, Cass Information Systems finds.

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Commentary

Despite the economic uncertainty the U.S. has experienced since 2008, domestic intermodal traffic in North America is growing robustly. Overall year-over-year volume growth through August 2013 was a healthy 6.8 percent. Domestic containers continue to see conversion from trailers in rail service — growing 9.7 percent, while trailer volumes shrank 2.9 percent, according to the Intermodal Association of North America, Yusen Logistics estimates and TTX fleet size data.