DJ of DJsTrains
Apr 2, 2021
Another great video, thank you!
A track serving a station is normally referred to as 'The Station Track'. A track in the vicinity of the station and publically accessible by truck or other customer provided equipment is routinely referred to as a 'Team Track'.
Customers without their own private sidings would utilize both Station and Team tracks for their shipments - both outbound and inbound. This was in the pre-pre-pre PSR days when railroads sought out ALL possible customers, big and small.
It seems as if every article I read in Trains that deals with a Class 1 RR, their management states that they are trying to increase their business while simultaneously saying that they don't want to do anything but move enormous trains, rapidly and uninterrupted, between a limited number of huge cities.
Am I the only one that sees the dichotomy here?
The Class 1's want to move freight 'wholesale' and charge 'retail'. They don't want to perform single car railroading - move a train of 'Private Owner' loaded cars from the shipper to the consignee and back to the shipper - no switching, just line of road movements between origin, destination and back to origin. Even better if the situation permits them to move TWO trains together for a significant part of the routes. The shipper and consignee provide all the facilities to load and unload the trains - including crews at the facilities.
Then how do the spin-off regionals and small folk play into the Class-1s' Point-to-Point business plan? The regionals and small folk deal with onesy-twosy customers who expect their products to be delivered across the country to various customers in different locations. This implies that the Class-1s run non-unit trains with intermediate switching between their end-point terminals.
The Regionals deal with the customers - perform all the 'high cost' actions and end up interchanging the traffic they originate to the Class 1's for the long haul to the destination Regional that deals with the high cost functions associated with servicing their customer. Class 1's don't deal with the origin or destination customers, they just haul the freight between interchanges.
PSR doesn't get the Class 1's totally out of car load business, but it gives them the leverage to eliminate small volume on line car load customers. Interchanging 40-50-60 cars a day with a Regional is more economical than dealing with the 20 - 30 customers for one or two cars each.
Thanks. I didn't realize how radically the Class 1 rail industry business plan had changed.
Do the Class 1's give trackage rights to Regionals, allowing them to service the low volume on line customers? Or do the Class 1's stop serving the low volume customers completely, forcing them to use trucking services? The latter option could be self-defeating for the Class 1's. The low volume customer may find it more convenient to deal with one or more trucking companies end-to-end than deal with an unfriendly Class 1 for part of the distance.
Class 1's have been 'pressuring' low volume car load customers since the enactment of Stagger's deregulation in 1980 using a number of tools, raising rates and reducing service being the most frequent 'road blocks' that are presented, throw in increased Accessorial Charges (Demurrage etc.) and the carriers force the customers to make other shipping decisions.
The introduction of PSR on most carriers functionally did away with any Marketing Departments and their employees.
Short sighted? I think so. But I am not running any of the railroads and my pencil sharpener is broken.
It appears that the replies to my post prove my point.
Somehow the management of the Class 1 RR's want to increase their business by servicing fewer and fewer businesses.
If they keep this up, they'll be making billions hauling nothing at all.
That's okay. The Federal Gov't spends billions doing nothing at all.
Short sighted, indeed. The number of potential volume shippers has decreased recently. (Coal, oil.) If the economy slows even more, vehicle shipments will drop. Containers of consumer goods will shrink in numbers. Meanwhile, the trucking industry picks up their castoffs and laughs all the way to the bank.
And the trucks get larger and larger while the city streets and loading docks remain the same.
We now have 50 foot trailers with supersized tractors towing them trying to make their way through streets that were originally designed with 20 foot box-cabs in mind.
Just the other day there was one of those behemoths nestled up to a loading dock and it was blocking both lanes of traffic on the street it was so long.
This doesn't even take into account the increased weight of these things, our roads and bridges were never designed and built for this size/weight of vehicle.
I know. I had a CDL. Maybe it was just me, but as they got longer, they became harder to work through traffic and streets. That was not any fun. Got so I did not want to enter any town of much size. Big sigh of relief getting outta there and back onto the highway. And as more places built roundabouts, those became a headache, too.
I am surprised that I haven't seen or heard of legislation being initiated for permitting double and triple 53 footers.
I know Mississippi allowed double-bottoms many years ago. They may be only 40's. Though I'll look more closely now that this thread is so active.
I assume Texas, Louisiana, Alabama, Florida, and Tennessee also allow double-bottoms. I see them on I-10, I-59, and US-49 every day. We have at least four double-bottom terminals in Gulfport, FEDEX, KLLM, SAIA, and UPS, possibly more that I don't recognize while I'm dodging "Country Cadillacs", aka humongous pickup trucks with huge tires, loud mufflers. and aggressive drivers.
So far KCS runs five daily 40-75 car 4 unit Geep round trips on their Gulfport Sub between Gulfport and Hattiesburg each week. These loads are transferred with the KCS yard in Jackson via CN haulage rights between Hattiesburg and Jackson.
mmi16, this is a curious exception to what you described as what most Class 1's are doing. Please understand, I'm not criticizing you. It's just that I have the impression that KCS may be the exception to the other Class 1 Business Plans. I've always been impressed with how KCS has seemed to be an imaginative, friendly, even a more "family oriented" company than the other Class 1's.
It will be interesting when (hopefully soon, not if) the STB allows CP to acquire (merge) the KCS.
Ok, just a 2011 teaser for you Gray Ghost Fans at the Saucier, MS, Old Still crossing....LOL.
Yes, there was an "Old Still" on that road year's ago. Sadly, no longer. I get my "likker" in Gulfport, legal and less shotguns.
Double and triple bottoms are commonplace on most Interstates, that being the case most that I have seen are either 27 footers or 40 footer (double only).
KCS, to my limited knowledge, has yet to adopt the PSR credo and as such they are the outlier among Class 1's. I don't believe BNSF has fully adopted the PSR credo - of course they are 'privately owned' and don't have to measure up to or exceed Wall Street's estimates of their earnings on a quarterly basis. Within the privacy of Berkshire-Hathaway BNSF can manage their company to its long term benefit, not the short sighted quarterly report.