Service Update for Friday, March 11, 2016
The operation experienced relatively steady performance and good fluidity across the network this week. While train velocity was unchanged, overall velocity averages for cars and locomotives were slightly lower versus the previous week. The average of total trains held increased by less than one train and remains at a very low level.
We experienced some service disruptions last Sunday on our Fallbridge Subdivision in Washington caused by a rockslide. More than two dozen trains were delayed as BNSF crews cleared the blocked portions of track and repaired several slide fences in the area. All work was completed within that same day and train flows normalized quickly through the affected location.
2016 Capital Investments: Central Region
As we continue to announce additional details of our capital investment plans across the network, BNSF will complete several key expansion projects as well as extensive maintenance work in our Central Region this year. In Nebraska, we will finish construction of nearly six miles of new double-track on our Ravenna Subdivision, between Pleasant Dale and Milford. In Kansas, 11 miles of new double-track will be added on the Ft. Scott Subdivision south of Kansas City. With our primary focus on operating as safely and efficiently as possible, our scheduled maintenance program will involve replacing and upgrading rail, rail ties and ballast in many locations throughout the region.
Service Expectations for the Week Ahead
The active El Nino weather pattern will remain in place into early next week as more rain and some mountain snow is expected in the Pacific Northwest. With the strong El Nino this year, western Washington has already experienced the wettest winter on record as nearly 40 inches of rain have fallen in the area since October 1.
Flash flood watches and warnings are currently in effect for all of Louisiana and in parts of east Texas and the Gulf Coast as some locations have received more than ten inches of rain in the past few days. High water has caused several washouts in this area and more rain is expected today and tomorrow. BNSF crews are ready to respond quickly to any additional track issues and will implement procedures, including the re-routing of some trains, to minimize delays as much as possible.
Some drier weather should arrive in the region late next week while some severe weather is possible in the northern Plains and upper Midwest as a storm system moves in during the final days of winter.
Below is a look at the key operational performance categories for the week ending March 8:
Total trains held for the week increased by more than one percent from the prior week with an average of 36.0 trains held.
Versus the March 2015 average: better by 64.6%
Total trains on the system was down by more than two percent from the prior week with an average of 1,245 trains on the system versus 1,271 during the prior week.
Locomotive velocity, measured in miles per day (MPD), was 300.0, which is down by more than two percent from the 307.0 MPD recorded during the prior week.
Versus the March 2015 average: better by 9.8%
Car velocity decreased by two percent at 227.3 MPD versus 232.0 MPD recorded the prior week.
Versus the March 2015 average: better by 7.2%
Train velocity was unchanged from the prior week at 22.0 miles per hour.
Versus the March 2015 average: better by 28.7%
Total volume was lower by nearly two percent from the prior week with 186,450 units moved in Week 9 (ending March 5).
Terminal dwell was down by less than one percent from the prior week at 24.6 hours.
Versus the March 2015 average: better by 0.8%
As always, we thank you for your business and appreciate the opportunity to serve as your transportation service provider. We welcome your feedback and questions.