Network Update for Friday, May 12, 2017
The operation exhibited strong resiliency this week following the major service challenges we have recently confronted, particularly the record flooding that impacted parts of Kansas, Oklahoma, Arkansas and Missouri. Car velocity improved significantly versus the prior week, however, it remains below the average level reported from the previous May. The average number of trains holding was reduced by more than 13 percent from the previous week but remains elevated.
As we reported, eight of our operating subdivisions in the central U.S. experienced service outages of varying lengths during the past two weeks as flooding reached historic levels in some locations. The River Subdivision between St. Louis and Chaffee, Missouri remains out of service, and there is currently no estimate as to when our main line, which is adjacent to the Mississippi River, may reopen. We continue to re-route some trains to minimize this disruption as much as possible.
In the Pacific Northwest, trains flows on our Fallbridge Subdivision, which runs between Vancouver and Pasco, Washington, have normalized following the extended outage for bridge work that took place earlier this week. We also experienced a landslide on our Seattle Subdivision in the Blue Ridge area of the city on May 4, which blocked both main tracks through the area for more than 36 hours. BNSF crews worked aggressively to clear debris and restore service on one main track while the second main track was returned to operation on Tuesday.
Get the Latest Ag News in John Miller's Podcast
In this week's audio podcast, BNSF Group Vice President of Agricultural Products John Miller gives an update on spring wheat, corn and soybeans and mentions that shuttle sales for placements continue for this summer and into the fall. Additionally, we have been offering non-shuttle freight, all the way into January 2018.
Service Expectations for the Week Ahead
Much of the network will experience generally favorable operating conditions as a quiet weather pattern takes hold over the central U.S. during the next few days. The Pacific Northwest will experience periods of rain, and some high winds are likely at times through desert Southwest during the upcoming week. However, no significant service interruptions due to weather are expected.
Below is a look at the key operational performance categories for the week ending May 11:
Total trains held for the week decreased by more than 13 percent with an average 84.4 trains held versus 97.3 trains held during the prior week.
Versus the May 2016 average: up by 198.3%
Total trains on the system increased by nearly four percent versus the prior week with an average of 1,407 trains on the system.
Locomotive velocity, measured in miles per day (MPD), was 278.3, which is up by more than five percent from the 264.3 MPD recorded the prior week.
Versus the May 2016 average: down by 8.4%
Car velocity was up by nearly six percent at 216.9 MPD versus 204.9 MPD recorded the prior week.
Versus the May 2016 average: down by 7.0%
Train velocity, measured in miles per hour (MPH), was up by nearly one percent versus the prior week at 18.2 MPH.
Versus the May 2016 average: down by 18.8%
Total volume was down by more than four percent from the prior week with 186,283 units moved in Week 18 (ending May 6) versus 195,014 units in Week 17 (ending April 29).
Terminal dwell was up by more than one percent from the prior week at 26.4 hours.
Versus the May 2016 average: up by 17.0%
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.