US chem railcar traffic falls 8.6% on hurricanes

18 September 2008 17:37  [Source: ICIS news]

TORONTO (ICIS news)--Hurricanes Gustav and Ike dampened US chemical railcar traffic for the week ended 13 September, the Association of American Railroads (AAR) said on Thursday.


US chemical railcar traffic for the week ended 13 September plunged 8.6% from the same week last year, following an 8.9% decline the week before, the AAR said.


“The hurricanes are the most likely reason for the drop in chemical shipments,” said AAR spokesman Tom White.


Chemical railcar loadings for the week totalled 28,162, compared with 30,820 for the same week in 2007, the association said.


The weekly rail shipment data is a good early indicator of current industry activity in US chemicals. Railroads transport more than 20% of the chemicals produced in the US.


Total chemical railcar loadings in the year-to-date period through to 13 September were up 2.6% year-on-year, to 1,150,382, from 1,120,818 a year ago.


Railcar loadings for all 19 commodities categories tracked by the AAR for the week were down 2.4% to 329,836, from 338,026 in the same week of 2007.


Year-to-date to 13 September overall railcar loadings for the 19 categories listed by the AAR were 12.04m, up marginally by 0.1% from the same period of 2007.


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By: Stefan Baumgarten
+1 713 525 2653

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