Chemical Rail Traffic Update
North American chemical rail traffic fell by 3.2%
MOSCOW (MRC) — North American chemical rail traffic fell by 3.2% year on year to 40,467 railcar loadings for the week ended 26 November – marking a 10th consecutive decline, according to the latest freight rail data by the Association of American Railroads (AAR).
An increase in Canada was more than offset by declines in the US and Mexico. The four-week average for North American chemical rail traffic was at 45,860 railcar loadings.
Despite the 10th decline in a row, for the first 47 weeks of 2022 ended 26 November North American chemical railcar traffic was still up 1.2% year on year to 2,155,420 railcar loadings.
In the US, chemical railcar loadings represent about 20% of chemical transportation by tonnage, with trucks, barges and pipelines carrying the rest. In Canada, producers rely on rail to ship more than 70% of their products, with some exclusively using rail.
Shipments of chemicals, coal, motor vehicles and parts, nonmetallic minerals, and oil and oil products rose for the first 47 weeks, while shipments in all other freight railcar categories fell.
In related news, the US House of Representatives on Wednesday adopted a resolution aimed at averting a rail strike.
We remind, for the week ending November 19, 2022, total U.S. weekly rail traffic was 491,794 carloads and intermodal units, down 3.2 percent compared with the same week last year. Total carloads for the week ending November 19 were 235,887 carloads, down 0.6 percent compared with the same week in 2021, while U.S. weekly intermodal volume was 255,907 containers and trailers, down 5.6 percent compared to 2021.