Rail Freight Equipment:
Within the North American (United States, Canada, and Mexico) rail system as of 2018, there were an estimated 1,670,000 freight cars in service. Of these, 19% were owned by the rail carriers, 53% were owned by lessors, 18% were owned by shippers, and 10% were owned by TTX (a jointly owned subsidiary of all the Class 1 RR’s). *Source GATX
Rail Industry Revenue and Capacity:
Rail freight revenue in 2017 was nearly $74 billion for the US railroads, who had 13 million carloads originating on their lines, plus another 14 million intermodal units. A modern railcar has a gross capacity of 286,000 lbs. (or 125.5 tons) moving in trains consisting of 100 cars or more, yielding a total carrying capacity of 12,500 tons per train. For 2017, the average Class I RR length of haul was 1033 miles at an average of $.0402 revenue per ton-mile.
In 2018, railroads moved a ton of freight an average of 473 miles per gallon of fuel. On average, trains are three to four times more fuel-efficient than trucks.