U.S., Canadian Customs Agencies, Railroads Reach Agreement To Strengthen Security

OTTAWA, Ontario – United States and Canadian customs agencies, along with Canada’s two major railways, have announced a declaration of principles to further enhance security at the Canada-U.S. border and to ensure secure rail access to the U.S. The joint government-industry initiative was completed after several months of discussion about ways to increase security of U.S.-bound rail shipments, while ensuring trade continues to flow between the two countries. These discussions were part of a larger process of implementing the Smart Border Declaration adopted by Canada and the United States in December 2001. “The signing of the declaration of principles shows

High Speed Rail in America

April 15, 2003 Railfanning.org News Wire 0

At the new year of 2003, only one high-speed rail corridor was in operation in the United States – The Northeast Corridor. “Our goal with this first Acela Express train was to establish a strong initial presence between Boston and New York and based on these initial results, we are succeeding,” said former Amtrak President George D. Warrington in January 2001. “Acela Express marks the introduction of premium, limited stop Amtrak service in New England and this first roundtrip was scheduled to serve that market.” However, high-speed rail as a viable option is being considered in communities nationwide. And in

Railroads in 2002

Burlington Northern Santa Fe (NYSE: BNI) FORT WORTH, Texas – BNSF’s earnings per share for the year ended December 31, 2002, was $2.00 on a diluted basis compared with prior period earnings of $1.87 per diluted share. Freight revenues for the year were $8.87 billion compared with 2001 revenues of $9.09 billion. Operating expenses of $7.32 billion decreased by $135 million. Operating income fell to $1.66 billion from $1.75 billion as compared with the prior period. 2001 earnings include unusual items comprised of an automotive contract settlement gain, losses on non-rail investments, work force reduction related costs and an expense

UP Offers Quick Web Pricing Solutions For Expanding “MexDirect” Service

March 31, 2003 Railfanning.org News Wire 0

OMAHA, Neb. – Union Pacific has announced that customers can now access rail through-rates and easy-to-use instructions on the UP Web site for their MexDirect product, offered in conjunction with the Transportacion Ferroviaria Mexicana and other participating rail connections. MexDirect, first introduced last year, is the industry’s first “one-stop” rail product for shipments moving between major markets in the U.S., Canada and Mexico. Union Pacific and Transportacion Ferroviaria Mexicana (TFM ) also announced the expansion of this innovative product, first introduced to cover iron and steel sheet or coil, to include other steel products, lumber, and various panel products. “We

CSXT Modifies Fuel Cost Recovery Program

March 25, 2003 Railfanning.org News Wire 0

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – In an effort to more quickly respond to changing market conditions and the continued volatility in fuel prices, CSX Transportation (CSXT) announced today modifications to its fuel cost recovery program. After the transition to the new program, CSXT’s fuel surcharges will be applied in smaller increments, on a more real-time basis, consistent with increases or decreases in fuel prices. With the changes, CSXT will no longer only adjust surcharges in 2 percnt increments for every $5/barrel change in crude oil prices. Instead, the surcharge will be adjusted up or down 0.4 percent for every dollar increase or

CPR Uses Vin Numbers To Boost Auto Shipment Efficiency

March 25, 2003 Railfanning.org News Wire 0

TORONTO, Ontario – Canadian Pacific Railway is nearing completion of a $4.5-million, multi-year program to harmonize railway shipments of motor vehicles with manufacturers’ and dealers’ computerized inventory systems through the use of the Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) that appears beneath the windshield of every new car and light truck. Once fully operational by mid-year, the Canadian Pacific Railway (CPR) VIN program will make it possible for customers to follow the progress of not only railway freight cars but also the individual automobiles and light trucks in them as they make their way from assembly plants to showrooms via the railway’s

CPR Joins Customs-Trade Partnership Against Terrorism

March 23, 2003 Railfanning.org News Wire 0

CALGARY, Alberta – Canadian Pacific Railway on March 21 announced it has further strengthened its cross-border security by joining the U.S. Customs-Trade Partnership Against Terrorism (C-TPAT). C-TPAT is a U.S. Bureau of Customs and Border Protection initiative to build relationships between business and government that strengthen overall supply chain and border security. “C-TPAT membership is an important vote of confidence in the steps CPR has taken to run a secure railway in the face of recent security threats,” Rob Ritchie, CPR’s President and Chief Executive Officer, said. “Initiatives such as C-TPAT help to keep important international trade routes operating safely

Amtrak Gets Most of Requested Funding

WASHINGTON – Congress on Feb. 13 passed legislation granting Amtrak a $1.05 billion operating and capital grant for the 2003 fiscal year. Additionally, repayment of a June 28, 2002, $100 million from the U.S. DOT loan from has been deferred. “We have no plans to shut down,” Amtrak spokeswoman Karina Van Veen told Gannett News Service. Amtrak’s $1.2 billion request for the fiscal year was predicated upon projected revenue levels and tight controls on spending. Despite the appropriation, Amtrak still believes sustaining operations will be an ongoing challenge. “Though the budget will be extremely tight, this funding level should be

Intermodal Freight: The Railroad’s livelihood

February 15, 2003 Railfanning.org News Wire 0

For a sixth time in seven years, intermodal freight set an annual record during 2002, according to the Association of American Railroads (AAR). “2002 was a very challenging year for industries across the economic spectrum, including freight railroads,” said AAR vice president Craig F. Rockey. “Obviously, we’re pleased to have set another intermodal record — an indication that the intermodal partnerships between railroads, motor carriers, and steamship lines are working extremely well.” Intermodal — the movement of trailers or containers on rail cars — accounts for approximately 20 percent of U.S. Class I rail revenue. Over the past 10 years,

Amtrak Funding: What’s the Answer?

February 1, 2003 Railfanning.org News Wire 0

Can Amtrak operate without government funding? “Earlier today I met with Senator Patty Murray of the Appropriations Committee concerning Amtrak funding for FY ’03,” Amtrak President David L. Gunn said on Jan. 15, 2003. “I updated Senator Murray on the progress being made to stabilize Amtrak’s operations and finances and to bring tight new fiscal controls to bear on the company. I also repeated my concern that federal funding substantially less than $1.2 billion in FY ‘03 will take us right back to the near-shutdown we experienced last summer.” Murray, D-Washington, along with several Senate Republicans, on Jan. 16 ensured

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