The Effects of Increased Shuttle-Train Movements of Grain and Oilseeds

Shuttle-train movements of grain and oilseeds increased substantially between 1994 and 2011. During this period, smaller movements decreased, with movements of 6 to 49 cars in particular decreasing significantly. Shuttle-train movements increase railroad efficiencies, leading to lower transportation costs for shippers located near shuttle-train loading facilities. However, many local grain elevators that are unable to accommodate shuttle-train shipments have gone out of business, leading to an increased demand for truck transport, which has increased road wear and upkeep costs. Some transportation researchers have argued that public subsidizations of rail branch lines may be justified to reduce the road upkeep costs caused by increased truck transport. Another option is to use State or Federal funds to improve the roads, lessening the financial impact on local jurisdictions.

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 Record created 2017-04-01, last modified 2018-01-22

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