Railroad Service Report Annual Update – Nov ’15
According to the Surface Transportation Board (STB), railroad conditions have improved considerably on a year-over-year (YOY) basis heading into November. Improving railroad conditions have been a function of milder weather, investments by the carriers and a decline in rail car shipments. Total cars online have declined by 3.3% YOY throughout the week ending October 31st. Declines in the total number of cars online have led to faster train speeds throughout the railroad system. Four week moving average train speeds for grain, ethanol and crude oil transportation reached a new 52-week high of 22.8 MPH during the week ending October 31st, finishing 11.5% above the previous year. Total grain, ethanol and crude oil cars held longer than 120 hours also improved significantly as four week moving average figures declined to a new 52-week low of 1,990 cars during the week ending October 31st, finishing 45.7% below the previous year. Crude oil trains held longer than 120 hours showed the largest improvements over recent months as the drop in crude oil prices has decreased demand for rail shipments. Crude oil cars held longer than 120 hours were 75.6% lower than the previous year during the week ending October 31st.