Bruce Harmon/Trans Pixs
Intermodal rail volume rose 4.4% in September from the same month a year ago, the Association of American Railroads reported Oct. 3. The three highest-volume intermodal weeks in history for U.S. railroads also occurred last month.
Traffic increased to 1.02 million trailers and containers, up 4.4% from September 2012, AAR said in its weekly report.
Eleven of the 20 carload commodity groups tracked by AAR posted increases, with motor vehicles and parts up 12% to 7,429 carloads for September. Petroleum and petroleum products were also up 10.4% to 4,825 carloads.
“The fact that rail carloads excluding coal and grain were up 4.9% in September, the biggest year-over-year monthly gain since last December, is a hopeful sign,” AAR Senior Vice President John Gray said in a statement.