Total carloads for the week ended April 18 were 189,598 carloads, down 27.5% compared with the same week in 2019, while U.S. weekly intermodal volume was 213,685 containers and trailers, down 19.1% compared to 2019.
“Rail volumes suffered again last week as extremely difficult times for rail customers and the economy continued,” said AAR Senior Vice President John T. Gray. “Like everyone else, railroads are looking forward to a return to normalcy and an end to the significant challenges associated with the pandemic. Until that happens, railroads will work hard to keep their employees and the communities they serve safe, will continue to deliver the goods needed to sustain and heal the nation, and, when appropriate, support its economic restoration.”
None of the 10 carload commodity groups posted an increase compared with the same week in 2019. Commodity groups that posted decreases compared with the same week in 2019 included commodities such as coal, down 35,555 carloads, to 48,423; motor vehicles and parts, down 14,459 carloads, to 1,943; and nonmetallic minerals, down 5,188 carloads, to 30,377.
For the first 16 weeks of 2020, U.S. railroads reported cumulative volume of 3,592,286 carloads, down 9.5% from the same point last year; and 3,823,931 intermodal units, down 10.4% from last year. Total combined U.S. traffic for the first 16 weeks of 2020 was 7,416,217 carloads and intermodal units, a decrease of 10% compared to last year.
North American rail volume for the week ending April 18, 2020, on 12 reporting U.S., Canadian and Mexican railroads totaled 277,795 carloads, down 23.5% compared with the same week last year, and 291,778 intermodal units, down 16.5% compared with last year. Total combined weekly rail traffic in North America was 569,573 carloads and intermodal units, down 20%. North American rail volume for the first 16 weeks of 2020 was 10,236,377 carloads and intermodal units, down 8.4% compared with 2019.