The Association of American Railroads (AAR) has reported that U.S. rail traffic for the week ending May 20, 2017, totaled 534,922 carloads and intermodal units, a 5.5 percent increase compared to the same week in 2016.
U.S. carloads, which totaled 260,115 for the week, were up by 6.4 percent compared to the same week last year. U.S. intermodal volume for the week totaled 274,807 units, an increase of 4.6 percent compared to 2016.
Five of the 10 carload commodity groups that are tracked by the AAR posted an increase for the week ending May 20, 2017, when compared with the same week in 2016. Grain saw an increase of 24.5 percent to 23,997 carloads, and coal was up 18.6 percent to 78,990 carloads. Nonmetallic minerals increased to 39,693 carloads, or 6.4 percent.
Petroleum and petroleum products posted the largest decrease in the commodity groups, with a drop of 16.8 percent to 9,670 carloads, followed by motor vehicles and parts with a decrease of 6.8 percent to 17,782 carloads. Forest products dropped 1.9 percent to 10,155 carloads.
For the first 20 weeks of 2017, U.S. rail volume totaled 10,364,280 carloads and intermodal units, an increase of 4.1 percent when compared to last year. Carloads, with a total of 5,114,060, were up by 6.5 percent, and intermodal, with a total of 5,250,220, increased by 1.9 percent.
On the 13 reporting U.S., Canadian and Mexican railroads, combined North American rail volume for the week ending May 20, 2017, was 708,410 carloads and intermodal units, up by 6.5 percent.
For the first 20 weeks of 2017, North American rail volume was up 5.2 percent, with a total of 13,734,475 carloads and intermodal units.