AAR reports annual carload and intermodal gains for week ending March 22
Carloads—at 291,525—were up 4.5 percent annually, and intermodal was up 10.6 percent at 260,713 containers and trailers.
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Carload and intermodal volumes were up for the week ending March 22, according to data released by the Association of American Railroads (AAR) this week.
Carloads—at 291,525—were up 4.5 percent annually and ahead of the weeks ending March 15 and March 8, which hit 289,375 and 274,480, respectively.
Intermodal was up 10.6 percent at 260,713 containers and trailers and topped the weeks ending March 15 and March 8, which came in at 255,991 and 244,015 respectively.
Of the ten main commodity groups tracked by the AAR, nine saw annual increases for the week ending March 22. Grain was up 16 percent, and motor vehicles and chemicals were off by 0.2 percent.
For the first 12 weeks of 2014, carloads are up 0.4 percent annually at 3,301,422, and intermodal is up 3 percent at 2,937,811 trailers and containers.
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Transportation of freight in containers was first recorded around 1780 to move coal along England’s Bridgewater Canal. However, "modern" intermodal rail service by a major U.S. railroad only dates back to 1936. Malcom McLean’s Sea-Land Service significantly advanced intermodalism, showing how freight could be loaded into a “container” and moved by two or more modes economically and conveniently. As with all new technologies, there were problems that slowed the growth, which influenced many potential customers to shy away from moving intermodal.
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