Rail Freight Traffic Continues to Feel Effects of Economic Slowdown

WASHINGTON — Freight traffic on U.S. railroads continued to show the effects of the economic slowdown during the week ended February 21 as  volume remained well below totals reported during the comparison week last year,  the Association of American Railroads reported today.

U.S carload freight totaled 278,827 cars, down 14.2 percent from the comparison week in 2008, with loadings down 12.8 percent in the West and 16.0 percent in the East.

Intermodal volume of 168,194 trailers or containers was off 25.3 percent from last year, with container volume falling 23.4 percent and trailer volume dropping 32.3 percent.  This year’s total was affected by the Lunar New Year while the 2008 total was not.

Total volume was estimated at 29.6 billion ton-miles, off 13.2 percent from 2008.