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October 7, 2015 1:00 PM, EDT

Intermodal Rail Traffic Rises in September

Jack Lyons/Flickr

U.S. rail intermodal traffic increased 1.6% in September compared with the same month the prior year, the Association of American Railroads reported.

Railroads moved 1.37 million intermodal trailers and containers, 16,272 more units than the same month last year, AAR said Oct. 7 in its weekly report.

“Intermodal continues to do well while results vary for other commodity categories. As we head into the fall shipping season, railroads are confident they will be able to handle reliably and safely the traffic their customers send their way. Now, we just need a bit more cooperation from the economy,” John Gray, AAR senior vice president of policy and economics, said in a statement.

Rail carload volume, which excludes intermodal units, declined 4.9% or 72,597 units in September year-over-year to 1.41 million carloads.

Six of the 20 commodity groups AAR tracks increased over last year, led by grain at 14.4%.

Intermodal traffic for the week ended Oct. 3 rose 1.9% to 382,018 units, the highest level since June, compared with the same week last year, according to AAR.

Rail carload volume, which excludes intermodal units, declined 0.7% year-over-year to 290,275 carloads.

Four of the 10 commodity groups AAR tracks increased over last year for the week, led by the miscellaneous carloads category at 52.4%.

Year-to-date intermodal traffic increased 2.5% to 10.4 million units from the same period last year, according to AAR.