AAR reports annual carload and intermodal gains for week ending October 19
Carload volume—at 289.256—was up 0.2 percent, and intermodal—at 264,687 trailers and containers— was up 4.3 percent.
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Carload and intermodal volumes were up for the week ending October 19, according to data released by the Association of American Railroads (AAR).
Carload volume—at 289,256—was up 0.2 percent annually and ahead of the week ending October 12 at 285,372 and the week ending October 5 at 279,128 and below the week ending September 28 at 296,809.
Intermodal—at 264,687 trailers and containers— was up 4.3 percent compared to the same week a year ago, marking the 16th consecutive week of growth, and was ahead of the week ending October 12 at 260,839 and below the week ending October 5 at 266,580 and the week ending September 28 at 269,853.
Total weekly traffic for carloads and intermodal units—at 553,943—was up 1.9 percent annually.
Of the ten main commodity groups tracked by the AAR, eight saw annual increases. Petroleum and petroleum products were up 15.5 percent, and grain was up 9.6 percent. Coal was down 6.0 percent.
On a year-to-date basis, carloads are down 0.9 percent at 11,794,294, and intermodal is up 3.7 percent at 10,339,870 containers and trailers.
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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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