Posts Tagged ‘AAR’

AAR Issues Advisory on Coil Car Wheel Defects

March 19, 2023

A railroad industry trade association has recommended that railroads remove from service coil cars similar to those involved in a March 5 derailment of a Norfolk Southern train in Springfield, Ohio.

The Association of American Railroads made the recommendation, which it said affects about 675 coil cars from service recently built by National Steel Car of Hamilton, Ontario.

At least two of the cars were involved in the Springfield derailment.

In its announcement, the AAR said a defect in the cars may have caused horizontal movement as the cars were in motion. Investigators found loose wheels on two of the cars in questions involved in the Ohio derailment.

According to the AAR, the defect may have caused horizontal movement as the car traveled down the line. The AAR recommendation advises railroads to replace the wheel sets before putting them back into service.

“This is an uncommon defect to see in a wheel set that demanded urgent action,” AAR said in a statement.

The cars covered by the advisory were built between August 2022 and March 2023.

U.S. Freight Traffic Up 3.3% in April

May 3, 2018

Freight traffic on U.S. railroads was up 3.3 percent in April when compared to the same month a year ago the Association of American Railroads reported on Wednesday.

The railroads originated 1,051,026 carloads last month, which was 34,020 more carloads than April 2017.

AAR reported that the railroads originated 1,099,000 containers and trailers in April 2018, up 6.8 percent, or 69,630 units, from the same month last year.

Combined U.S. carload and intermodal originations in April 2018 were 2,150,026, up 5.1 percent, or 103,650 carloads and intermodal units from April 2017.

“Total U.S. rail traffic so far this year is a shade below where it was in 2015, but otherwise is higher than it’s been in the last 10 years,” said AAR Senior Vice President John T. Gray in a statement.

“Additionally, 15 of the 20 commodity categories we track had higher carloads in April 2018 than in April 2017, the most since January 2015. That’s good news for railroads and good news for the economy.”

Fifteen of the 20 carload commodity categories tracked by the AAR each month saw gains compared with April 2017.

These included crushed stone, sand and gravel, up 8,466 carloads or 8.6 percent; coal, up 7,337 carloads or 2.4 percent; and grain, up 5,305 carloads or 5.7 percent.

Commodities that saw declines in April 2018 from April 2017 included nonmetallic minerals, down 2,513 carloads or 13 percent; waste and nonferrous scrap, down 1,056 carloads or 7.1 percent; and primary forest products, down 651 carloads or 14.6 percent.

Excluding coal, carloads were up 26,683 carloads, or 3.8 percent, in April 2018 from April 2017. Excluding coal and grain, carloads were up 21,378 carloads, or 3.5 percent.

NS Manager Receives AAR Safety Award

October 21, 2017

A Norfolk Southern executive was the 2017 recipient of the Holden-Proefrock Award given by the Association of American Railroads.

Paul Williams was recognized for his 34 years of seeking to ensure the safe transport of hazardous materials by rail.

As NS Southeast regional manager of hazardous materials, Williams oversees emergency response, regulatory support, and managing derailments.

The Holden-Proefrock Award is named in honor of Roy Holden, a former AAR employee and innovator in tank car design and safety, and Art Proefrock, a former Hulcher Emergency Services employee who pioneered hazardous materials transportation emergency response.

The AAR also presented its 2016 NAR Grand Slam Awards on 21 companies that were recognized for being “exemplary” shippers of hazardous materials. An award winner must have been recognized by at least four Class I railroads and have had zero non accident releases involving their shipments during the previous calendar year.