Hump Yards Closing

2426 views
22 replies
1 rating 2 rating 3 rating 4 rating 5 rating
  • Member since
    September, 2008
  • 6 posts
Hump Yards Closing
Posted by rickct on Thursday, May 18, 2017 11:02 AM

I'm a relative novice. Can someone please explain why Harrison is closing so many CSX hump operations? It seems to me that they would be a very efficient car classificatiojn tool. What am i Missing?

 

  • Member since
    October, 2014
  • From: Flint or Grand Rapids, Mi or Elkhart, It Depends on the day
  • 400 posts
Posted by BOB WITHORN on Thursday, May 18, 2017 12:07 PM
One of the reasons is there aren't as many general freight cars to classify.
  • Member since
    May, 2003
  • From: US
  • 12,754 posts
Posted by BaltACD on Thursday, May 18, 2017 12:53 PM

rickct
I'm a relative novice. Can someone please explain why Harrison is closing so many CSX hump operations? It seems to me that they would be a very efficient car classificatiojn tool. What am i Missing?

He can shout that he is saving money in closing them (investors love to hear a CEO say he is saving the company money).  And when he reopens them after a period of time he will again shout the reopening the humps will save the company money (investors love to hear a CEO say he is saving the company money).

PONZI schemes and shell games.

         

Never too old to have a happy childhood!

  • Member since
    October, 2006
  • From: Allentown, PA
  • 9,209 posts
Posted by Paul_D_North_Jr on Thursday, May 18, 2017 5:49 PM

Bow BaltACD ! (Or similar cycles of merge and then divest, or go private and then go public, etc. - meanwhile, the alleged 'investment bankers' and hedge funds get rich on the fees and arbitrage of the transactions which yield no real economic value.)

Or quickly claim credit for the short-term savings, and then just as quickly move on before the negative effects on those actions come home to roost.  (This kind of thing is not limited to railroad execs, not by a long shot.)  CN (among others) has extensive compensation / corporate governance provisions in place to prevent - or at least deny or reclaim - any such benefits of that kind of behavior.

- PDN. 

"This Fascinating Railroad Business" (title of 1943 book by Robert Selph Henry of the AAR)
  • Member since
    December, 2001
  • From: Denver / La Junta
  • 8,903 posts
Posted by mudchicken on Thursday, May 18, 2017 9:19 PM

Hump yards do not always turn out to be more efficient or handle more cars in a day. You have to sit down and look hard at what you want.

Does Hunter know there's more involved than just throwing a switch when you shut down or fire up one of those hummers?

Mudchicken Nothing is worth taking the risk of losing a life over. Come home tonight in the same condition that you left home this morning in. Safety begins with ME.... cinscocom-west
  • Member since
    December, 2001
  • From: Northern New York
  • 17,453 posts
Posted by tree68 on Thursday, May 18, 2017 9:31 PM

mudchicken
Does Hunter know there's more involved than just throwing a switch when you shut down or fire up one of those hummers?

I suspect he (and his hedge fund handlers) really don't care, as long as the bottom line moves in the proper direction...

LarryWhistling
Resident Microferroequinologist (at least at my house) 
Everyone goes home; Safety begins with you
My Opinion. Standard Disclaimers Apply. No Expiration Date
Come ride the rails with me!
There's one thing about humility - the moment you think you've got it, you've lost it...

  • Member since
    December, 2007
  • From: Georgia USA SW of Atlanta
  • 8,336 posts
Posted by blue streak 1 on Friday, May 19, 2017 3:18 AM

News wire says he has sidelined 500+ locos.  You cannot prove it by watching here.  The trains by here especially manifest all now have at least 3 operating locos and train speeds have increased as well. used to have just 2. Intermodals of CSX variety are also running with 3 units.  The BNSF intermodals almost all have 3 - 4 operating units needed on the Lineville sub LaGrange - BHM.   Guess an extra unit helps keep loco failures from guming up the works.

  • Member since
    May, 2003
  • From: US
  • 2,141 posts
Posted by PNWRMNM on Friday, May 19, 2017 8:10 AM

rickct

I'm a relative novice. Can someone please explain why Harrison is closing so many CSX hump operations? It seems to me that they would be a very efficient car classificatiojn tool. What am i Missing?

You are missing the big issue which is "Do I have to classify that car here?

Many of the other responders so far have missed the far bigger point which is that railroads exist to make money. Period. End Stop. They do that by producing a transportation service that enough customers will pay enough for to enable the railroad to earn enough money to stay in business, and hopefully do much better than that.

Yes, hump yards are good at sorting cars. They are also big and expensive to build, maintain, and operate. It takes a high daily volume over the hump to cover those costs. Hump yards take 24-36 hours to process every car that goes into them. That is a lot of car hire cost if you have 2,000 cars in inventory at $1 per car per hour.

Historically the default railroad strategy has been to hump every train at every hump yard that a car may encounter. That makes for slow service. What EHH is trying to do is to minimize car handling in general, and humping events in particular. That means building blocks at origin yards, hump or flat, and NOT taking those blocks over intermediate hump yards. Avoiding intermediate hump yards saves car hire and hump operating costs. It also reduces trip time for each hump avoided. If average dwell in Toledo is 4 hours vs. say 28 as a hump, the car has just saved a full day.

This sounds pretty simple, so why is it so radical to the other posters? IMHO it is because railroaders, like all of us, are creatures of habbit. If the habbit, practice, policy of the railroad is to hump everything, then by God everything will be humped!

The other point is that keeping cars out of hump yards means that more mental effort needs to go into service design. You may run different trains with different blocking. You do block swaps in the arrival and/or departure tracks of the former hump yard. You flat switch cars to and from local customers. Different processes and different mind set, in short disruption and nobody likes disruption.

Given Harrison's history of tuning up operations at CN and CP, I would not bet against him at CSX.

Mac McCulloch

 

 

  • Member since
    May, 2003
  • From: US
  • 12,754 posts
Posted by BaltACD on Friday, May 19, 2017 10:43 AM

PNWRMNM
rickct

I'm a relative novice. Can someone please explain why Harrison is closing so many CSX hump operations? It seems to me that they would be a very efficient car classificatiojn tool. What am i Missing?

You are missing the big issue which is "Do I have to classify that car here?

Many of the other responders so far have missed the far bigger point which is that railroads exist to make money. Period. End Stop. They do that by producing a transportation service that enough customers will pay enough for to enable the railroad to earn enough money to stay in business, and hopefully do much better than that.

Yes, hump yards are good at sorting cars. They are also big and expensive to build, maintain, and operate. It takes a high daily volume over the hump to cover those costs. Hump yards take 24-36 hours to process every car that goes into them. That is a lot of car hire cost if you have 2,000 cars in inventory at $1 per car per hour.

Historically the default railroad strategy has been to hump every train at every hump yard that a car may encounter. That makes for slow service. What EHH is trying to do is to minimize car handling in general, and humping events in particular. That means building blocks at origin yards, hump or flat, and NOT taking those blocks over intermediate hump yards. Avoiding intermediate hump yards saves car hire and hump operating costs. It also reduces trip time for each hump avoided. If average dwell in Toledo is 4 hours vs. say 28 as a hump, the car has just saved a full day.

This sounds pretty simple, so why is it so radical to the other posters? IMHO it is because railroaders, like all of us, are creatures of habbit. If the habbit, practice, policy of the railroad is to hump everything, then by God everything will be humped!

The other point is that keeping cars out of hump yards means that more mental effort needs to go into service design. You may run different trains with different blocking. You do block swaps in the arrival and/or departure tracks of the former hump yard. You flat switch cars to and from local customers. Different processes and different mind set, in short disruption and nobody likes disruption.

Given Harrison's history of tuning up operations at CN and CP, I would not bet against him at CSX.

Mac McCulloch

Efficiently move traffic across the network of today's Class 1 carriers is no simple task.

Take a East Coast terminal that generates the following traffic on a daily basis - 10 for Northern Jersey, 10 for Southern Jersey, 6 for Boston, 8 for Montreal, 12 for Richmond, 15 for Atlanta, 8 for Miami, 14 for Mobile, 5 for Huntington, 10 for Louisville, 6 for Columbus, 10 for Indiainapolis, 15 for New Orleans - UP, 10 for Memphis - BNSF, 6 for Birmingham, 20 for Chicago proper, 15 for Chicago - UP, 20 for Chicago - BNSF, 10 for Cincinnati, 15 for Nashville, 10 for Chattanooga.

Having mentioned a number of 'destinations' and 'volumes' - develop a service plan to move these cars with the fewest possible switching within the framework of your existing network while maximizing train size and minimizing car delay (note the destinations mentioned will be generating their own traffic and volumes to the destinations mentioned as well as others). 

Efficient service plans are not simple, who knew?

In the 20's and 30's the service plan was 'kick the can' to the next terminal and repeat the process.  21st Century service plans are developed around the premise of a single humping between origin and destination, not humping after humping.  When stating that humping 'delays' a car 24 hours or more - that overlooks the reality that service is normally provided by a single train from the hump location to the destination location, because there isn't sufficient volume to warrent more frequent than daily service.  If hourly service was provided departing hump yards there would not be 24 hour delays, but if you miss your train you move on the next one.

With Harrison on the property I have sympathy for the CSX Service Design people in trying to put in place operating plans that will work with the diminshed facilities  that are available.

I view Harrison's thought process as - trains get delayed on siding in single track territory - solution, remove the sidings and they won't get delayed.

         

Never too old to have a happy childhood!

  • Member since
    August, 2005
  • From: At the Crossroads of the West
  • 8,592 posts
Posted by Deggesty on Friday, May 19, 2017 11:22 AM

Quoting Balt: "I view Harrison's thought process as - trains get delayed on siding in single track territory - solution, remove the sidings and they won't get delayed."

I think the BNSF's policy is better: extend your sidings to make a two-track road.

Of course, that takes money--and who wants to spend money just make more money?

I think of what the NP did eons ago, back when I was young: it re-equipped the North Coast Limited with the view of attracting more passengers.

Johnny

  • Member since
    May, 2003
  • From: US
  • 2,141 posts
Posted by PNWRMNM on Friday, May 19, 2017 12:48 PM

BaltACD

Efficiently move traffic across the network of today's Class 1 carriers is no simple task.

Take a East Coast terminal that generates the following traffic on a daily basis - 10 for Northern Jersey, 10 for Southern Jersey, 6 for Boston, 8 for Montreal, 12 for Richmond, 15 for Atlanta, 8 for Miami, 14 for Mobile, 5 for Huntington, 10 for Louisville, 6 for Columbus, 10 for Indiainapolis, 15 for New Orleans - UP, 10 for Memphis - BNSF, 6 for Birmingham, 20 for Chicago proper, 15 for Chicago - UP, 20 for Chicago - BNSF, 10 for Cincinnati, 15 for Nashville, 10 for Chattanooga.

Having mentioned a number of 'destinations' and 'volumes' - develop a service plan to move these cars with the fewest possible switching within the framework of your existing network while maximizing train size and minimizing car delay (note the destinations mentioned will be generating their own traffic and volumes to the destinations mentioned as well as others). 

Efficient service plans are not simple, who knew?

When stating that humping 'delays' a car 24 hours or more - that overlooks the reality that service is normally provided by a single train from the hump location to the destination location, because there isn't sufficient volume to warrent more frequent than daily service.  If hourly service was provided departing hump yards there would not be 24 hour delays, but if you miss your train you move on the next one.

All,

Balt gives a nice summary of the carload switching issue and why the cost of intermediate switching is a significant portion of total carload costs.

While it is true that service to many destinations is one train a day, Balt's implication that the 24-36 hour dwell time in a hump yard is irrelevant or free is incorrect. It is true that yard dwell time has two components, those inherent in the yard process, and the wait for a connection. A flat yard eliminates some of those processess that the hump yard can not avoid, and thus some of the delay.

As a matter of random statistics given a one train per day departure, and zero processing time, each car would experience an expected average delay of 12 hours. Anything over that I would attribute to hump yard processes. In addition, there are many cases where cars get in and out of a flat yard in less than 12 hours by some combination of management planning and sharp railroading on the ground. 

Cars cost money by the hour. The fewer hours needed to move from origin to destination the better in terms of both cost and value to the customer. This last is also a function of variability of transit time. More variablity, less value. Hump yards burn massive amounts of money in the form of car hire. They are wonders used correctly, but money pits in the best of times.

The question is what is the cheapest way to provide a quality of service that the customers will pay for.

Mac

  • Member since
    December, 2001
  • From: Northern New York
  • 17,453 posts
Posted by tree68 on Friday, May 19, 2017 12:49 PM

Deggesty
Of course, that takes money--and who wants to spend money just make more money?

Especially if that money could be going into the investor's pockets instead...

LarryWhistling
Resident Microferroequinologist (at least at my house) 
Everyone goes home; Safety begins with you
My Opinion. Standard Disclaimers Apply. No Expiration Date
Come ride the rails with me!
There's one thing about humility - the moment you think you've got it, you've lost it...

  • Member since
    May, 2003
  • From: US
  • 12,754 posts
Posted by BaltACD on Friday, May 19, 2017 1:00 PM

When it comes to car for car switching - flat switching has no advantage over humping.  If a location has 100 cars a day to switch, flat switching is preferred.  If a location has several thousand cars a day to switch, humping is preferred.

Now, if block swaping situations can be created that can be more efficient than any kind of switching - especially if the Air Test integrity of the block can be maintained between set off and pick up.

         

Never too old to have a happy childhood!

  • Member since
    December, 2007
  • From: Southeast Michigan
  • 2,889 posts
Posted by Norm48327 on Friday, May 19, 2017 1:30 PM

Balt,

Carl spent his working life in a hump yard I would like to hear his opinion. I'm sure there are justifications for both.

Norm


  • Member since
    May, 2003
  • From: US
  • 12,754 posts
Posted by BaltACD on Friday, May 19, 2017 4:22 PM

Norm48327
Balt,

Carl spent his working life in a hump yard I would like to hear his opinion. I'm sure there are justifications for both.

I spent my career working in and with both enviornments - they each have their benefits and drawbacks.  Each is a tool.  Using the right tool for the right job decreases the amont of time that is necessary to accomplish the job.

Why are multiple kinds and sizes of screwdrivers - there a multiple kinds and sizes of screws.  Trying to mandate one tool can perform all required elements of the job is hubris to the max.

         

Never too old to have a happy childhood!

  • Member since
    June, 2009
  • From: Dallas, TX
  • 2,720 posts
Posted by CMStPnP on Friday, May 19, 2017 9:51 PM

rickct

I'm a relative novice. Can someone please explain why Harrison is closing so many CSX hump operations? It seems to me that they would be a very efficient car classificatiojn tool. What am i Missing.

The EHH theory....

A parked railroad car is losing money every minute it stands still.    I think that is why rails charge for their cars on a customer siding sitting still.   By blocking the cars as they are coupled to the train for their flat switch yard final destination instead of waiting for the next yard the need for the car to stay parked less and it moves more.   Resulting in less need for both Locomotives and quantity of railcars..........and less need for hump yards.   It should have been a no brainer for the railroads to figure this out way prior to EHH.    Some like CSX said they did but were not moving as fast as EHH implementing it.   NS says it has not fully embraced the concept because it is not always customer service friendly but is watching how CSX implements it.

I am guessing NS complaint about not being customer service friendly is some shipping dock supervisors have their head up their arse on when they need cars and instead of the railroad stating:   "Sorry no cars available because you didn't order them", they might need leeway with larger customers to store cars locally when forecasting mistakes happen for a fudge factor.......as an example.   In other cases the shipper might depend on the transit time of the car as a buffer so the reciepient does not recieve the car too soon and have to find a place to store what is in the car..................all speculation on my part but observed it with trucks long ago when I worked in a warehouse.    Shipping is a science and in most cases if you ship too soon the recieving customer beotches because they do not have floor space for the shipment.    Ship too late and the customer beotches because their plant management schedule it thrown into chaos and they have to explain to their client why they are late.

Also, end of year or end of financial reporting year shipping is another three ring circus because plants do not want to accept more inventory as it goes on their financial books and increases their annual operating expenses so some work out these backroom deals between suppliers on when precisely they want the items to ship and arrive at their dock around the end of the financial year.   I can just imagine how railroads handle the end of year nonsense with financial accounting, that could be the source of a good comic strip.

  • Member since
    May, 2003
  • From: US
  • 12,754 posts
Posted by BaltACD on Friday, May 19, 2017 10:19 PM

CMStPnP
rickct

I'm a relative novice. Can someone please explain why Harrison is closing so many CSX hump operations? It seems to me that they would be a very efficient car classificatiojn tool. What am i Missing.

The EHH theory....

A parked railroad car is losing money every minute it stands still.    I think that is why rails charge for their cars on a customer siding sitting still.   By blocking the cars as they are coupled to the train for their flat switch yard final destination instead of waiting for the next yard the need for the car to stay parked less and it moves more.   Resulting in less need for both Locomotives and quantity of railcars..........and less need for hump yards.   It should have been a no brainer for the railroads to figure this out way prior to EHH.    Some like CSX said they did but were not moving as fast as EHH implementing it.   NS says it has not fully embraced the concept because it is not always customer service friendly but is watching how CSX implements it.

I am guessing NS complaint about not being customer service friendly is some shipping dock supervisors have their head up their arse on when they need cars and instead of the railroad stating:   "Sorry no cars available because you didn't order them", they might need leeway with larger customers to store cars locally when forecasting mistakes happen for a fudge factor.......as an example.   In other cases the shipper might depend on the transit time of the car as a buffer so the reciepient does not recieve the car too soon and have to find a place to store what is in the car..................all speculation on my part but observed it with trucks long ago when I worked in a warehouse.    Shipping is a science and in most cases if you ship too soon the recieving customer beotches because they do not have floor space for the shipment.    Ship too late and the customer beotches because their plant management schedule it thrown into chaos and they have to explain to their client why they are late.

Also, end of year or end of financial reporting year shipping is another three ring circus because plants do not want to accept more inventory as it goes on their financial books and increases their annual operating expenses so some work out these backroom deals between suppliers on when precisely they want the items to ship and arrive at their dock around the end of the financial year.   I can just imagine how railroads handle the end of year nonsense with financial accounting, that could be the source of a good comic strip.

Figures lie, liars figure - Hedege Funds and their minions are the home of figuring liars dedicated to the proposition of looting all available funds from the companies they manage in the shortest amount of time.  That is the Mantle Ridge and EHH modus operandi!

         

Never too old to have a happy childhood!

  • Member since
    June, 2009
  • From: Dallas, TX
  • 2,720 posts
Posted by CMStPnP on Saturday, May 20, 2017 10:00 PM

BaltACD
Figures lie, liars figure - Hedege Funds and their minions are the home of figuring liars dedicated to the proposition of looting all available funds from the companies they manage in the shortest amount of time.  That is the Mantle Ridge and EHH modus operandi!

If CSX Management moved faster than a tree sloth at achieving it's financial objectives.  EHH would not be there.    I was a stockholder for several years and I could not believe the stock was valued above $5 a share with the complete lack of attention or even care for that matter to planning for the future or improving the operating ratio.    Every year until I dropped it to move on to better managed companies........they had a different excuse as to why Operating Ratio barely moved since the last year.     This went on for at least three years and I threw in the towel.   Ridiculous.      Say what you will about different financial houses of ill repute but they get the job done of cleaning the ocean floor.

Weren't some CSX guys on here, years ago when Snow was CEO complaining he was an alcholic?

  • Member since
    May, 2003
  • From: US
  • 12,754 posts
Posted by BaltACD on Saturday, May 20, 2017 10:23 PM

CMStPnP
Weren't some CSX guys on here, years ago when Snow was CEO complaining he was an alcholic?

Don't know about being an alkie - he did golden parachute into being Treasurer of the United States of America with $69M in his parachute for leaving CSX.  From ToUSA he moved onto a hedge fund that raped EMD among others.  A man of the EHH mold.

         

Never too old to have a happy childhood!

  • Member since
    June, 2009
  • From: Dallas, TX
  • 2,720 posts
Posted by CMStPnP on Sunday, May 21, 2017 8:50 AM

BaltACD

 

 
CMStPnP
Weren't some CSX guys on here, years ago when Snow was CEO complaining he was an alcholic?

 

Don't know about being an alkie - he did golden parachute into being Treasurer of the United States of America with $69M in his parachute for leaving CSX.  From ToUSA he moved onto a hedge fund that raped EMD among others.  A man of the EHH mold.

I was at GM World HQ from 1991-1994, they initially wanted to sell EMD then.   It was the large BN order for SD70MAC's that gave them pause to reconsider.   They eventually sold EMD to raise cash to support their auto business.   The issue with EMD was GM rarely invested money back into the subsidiary after 1970, everything developed at EMD in the later years post 1970 was largely the result of EMD's own efforts  at investment and loans vs money from the parent GM.   GM sucked off the extra cash and plowed it into the automotive side.    Not sure when that started but it happened throughout the 1980's.   Then the Gulf War recession hit and GM found itself short of cash again.....had it not been for the large BN order (which gave GM hope that EMD would be a cash cow again), GM would have sold EMD back then.    

So I am not sure how much damage the Hedge Fund did to EMD it was already partially hollowed out.    Another weakness of EMD which was resolved by the Catapillar purchase was that it's narrow line of  Diesels could have been sold as part of a larger line.    Instead of selling EMD Engines just to Terex, they could have also modified them a little and sold for Marine applications as well.    I was always amazed that EMD and Detroit Diesel was never combined into a single firm since they were both under the GM umbrella at one time.

  • Member since
    December, 2001
  • From: Northern New York
  • 17,453 posts
Posted by tree68 on Sunday, May 21, 2017 5:10 PM

CMStPnP
I was always amazed that EMD and Detroit Diesel was never combined into a single firm since they were both under the GM umbrella at one time.

Recall that for many years each of the automobile lines was its own entity.  There was no confusing any model of an Olds for a Buick, or a Chevy, etc.  It wasn't until the 60's and 70's that they started using the same body across several lines.

Thus Detroit Diesel and EMD were catering to different markets, and I'm sure that virtually no one considered there could be overlap.

LarryWhistling
Resident Microferroequinologist (at least at my house) 
Everyone goes home; Safety begins with you
My Opinion. Standard Disclaimers Apply. No Expiration Date
Come ride the rails with me!
There's one thing about humility - the moment you think you've got it, you've lost it...

  • Member since
    July, 2016
  • 78 posts
Posted by Backshop on Sunday, May 21, 2017 7:40 PM

CMStPnP
  

 Instead of selling EMD Engines just to Terex, they could have also modified them a little and sold for Marine applications as well.    I was always amazed that EMD and Detroit Diesel was never combined into a single firm since they were both under the GM umbrella at one time.

Many of the Great Lakes freighters built during the 1970-80's were powered by 20-645 EMD diesels.  I don't know what happened after that.

  • Member since
    March, 2016
  • 109 posts
Posted by IslandMan on Monday, May 22, 2017 8:16 AM

PNWRMNM

 

 
BaltACD

Efficiently move traffic across the network of today's Class 1 carriers is no simple task.

Take a East Coast terminal that generates the following traffic on a daily basis - 10 for Northern Jersey, 10 for Southern Jersey, 6 for Boston, 8 for Montreal, 12 for Richmond, 15 for Atlanta, 8 for Miami, 14 for Mobile, 5 for Huntington, 10 for Louisville, 6 for Columbus, 10 for Indiainapolis, 15 for New Orleans - UP, 10 for Memphis - BNSF, 6 for Birmingham, 20 for Chicago proper, 15 for Chicago - UP, 20 for Chicago - BNSF, 10 for Cincinnati, 15 for Nashville, 10 for Chattanooga.

Having mentioned a number of 'destinations' and 'volumes' - develop a service plan to move these cars with the fewest possible switching within the framework of your existing network while maximizing train size and minimizing car delay (note the destinations mentioned will be generating their own traffic and volumes to the destinations mentioned as well as others). 

Efficient service plans are not simple, who knew?

When stating that humping 'delays' a car 24 hours or more - that overlooks the reality that service is normally provided by a single train from the hump location to the destination location, because there isn't sufficient volume to warrent more frequent than daily service.  If hourly service was provided departing hump yards there would not be 24 hour delays, but if you miss your train you move on the next one.

 

 

All,

Balt gives a nice summary of the carload switching issue and why the cost of intermediate switching is a significant portion of total carload costs.

While it is true that service to many destinations is one train a day, Balt's implication that the 24-36 hour dwell time in a hump yard is irrelevant or free is incorrect. It is true that yard dwell time has two components, those inherent in the yard process, and the wait for a connection. A flat yard eliminates some of those processess that the hump yard can not avoid, and thus some of the delay.

As a matter of random statistics given a one train per day departure, and zero processing time, each car would experience an expected average delay of 12 hours. Anything over that I would attribute to hump yard processes. In addition, there are many cases where cars get in and out of a flat yard in less than 12 hours by some combination of management planning and sharp railroading on the ground. 

Cars cost money by the hour. The fewer hours needed to move from origin to destination the better in terms of both cost and value to the customer. This last is also a function of variability of transit time. More variablity, less value. Hump yards burn massive amounts of money in the form of car hire. They are wonders used correctly, but money pits in the best of times.

The question is what is the cheapest way to provide a quality of service that the customers will pay for.

Mac

 

The classification yard is probably on a long-term decline worldwide as trainload and intermodal become more significant.  For long-distance freight, there is still a role for carload and hence classification yards as the proportion of time taken for classification is a fraction of the total transit time. Where there is little scope for long-distance freight, as in the UK, carload has virtually disappeared and the classification yards have closed.

 

Join our Community!

Our community is FREE to join. To participate you must either login or register for an account.

Newsletter Sign-Up

By signing up you may also receive occasional reader surveys and special offers from Trains magazine.Please view our privacy policy

Search the Community