Is NS in the ditch?

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  • Member since
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Posted by ns145 on Tuesday, February 13, 2018 3:48 PM

Mookie

So NS numbers don't improve.  Who blinks first?  Who steps in and makes the first move.  Stockholders?  BOD?  Do they replace management and hope for the best?  Where does it go from here?  

 

 

Customers will complain to NS about declining service levels.  If NS does not get out ahead of this thing, then the shippers will ask the STB to get involved.  In short, CSX last summer all over again. 

Given all of the financial improvements Jim Squires and his team have made at NS over the past couple of years, plus the successful thwarting of the CP takeover by Hunter Harrison, NS' management is quite safe for the forseeable future.  The operating stats might look bad, but the financials are good.         

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Posted by oltmannd on Tuesday, February 13, 2018 3:51 PM

LithoniaOperator

oltmannd, are those idle trains in sidings sitting there with the power still attached?

 

Mostly.

-Don (Random stuff, mostly about trains - what else? http://blerfblog.blogspot.com/

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Posted by oltmannd on Tuesday, February 13, 2018 3:52 PM

BaltACD
NS troubles are self inflicted.

Yep.  "the drive to 65" is now progresing to the ditch.

-Don (Random stuff, mostly about trains - what else? http://blerfblog.blogspot.com/

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Posted by ns145 on Tuesday, February 13, 2018 4:19 PM

Paul of Covington

   Could it be that NS is swamped by increased traffic?   Refugees from CSX?

 

Overall, NS' traffic year to date is flat compared to 2017 (-524 units as of 2/10/2018).  Intermodal is up 5.7% (25,500 units) while coal is down 11.1% (-13,268 carloads) and merchandise traffic is down 4.5% (-12,756 carloads). 

Usually when merchandise traffic drops off it frees up capacity at classification yards and dwell time decreases.  Yet, we are seeing the exact opposite response in the terminal dwell stats.  That is a bit of a head scratcher.

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Posted by blue streak 1 on Tuesday, February 13, 2018 6:28 PM

Have no idea if the problems caused this.  Crescent #20 lost 6 hours New Orleans - Atlanta

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Posted by Eastrail11 on Wednesday, February 14, 2018 7:44 AM

This was probably due to Amtrak not getting priority, that is how some other trains like the SouthWest chief to Chicago is currently 4 hours and 50 minutes late, most likely not Amtrak fault. Also the Empire Builder is just over 4 hours late to Chicago. Lets not talk about Via's Canadian, 21 hours late... Back to NS, I hope they do not fall into the hand of another railroad because that might lead to higher prices. Having a BNSF yard in Florida might be intersting though, FEC intermodal to the West coast might lead to more trains in South Florida, which means more trains for us to railfan! Big Smile Also would not mind some more CSX trains. More trains is always good, well, unless you try to beat them. Please excuess al typos. 

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Posted by BaltACD on Wednesday, February 14, 2018 9:19 AM

Eastrail11
This was probably due to Amtrak not getting priority, that is how some other trains like the SouthWest chief to Chicago is currently 4 hours and 50 minutes late, most likely not Amtrak fault. Also the Empire Builder is just over 4 hours late to Chicago. Lets not talk about Via's Canadian, 21 hours late... Back to NS, I hope they do not fall into the hand of another railroad because that might lead to higher prices. Having a BNSF yard in Florida might be intersting though, FEC intermodal to the West coast might lead to more trains in South Florida, which means more trains for us to railfan! Big Smile Also would not mind some more CSX trains. More trains is always good, well, unless you try to beat them. Please excuess al typos.

Rail traffic is what it is - line mergers don't change the available traffic base,  they only change the routing of how that traffic is handled.  Mergers normally lead to fewer trains, not more.

         

Never too old to have a happy childhood!

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Posted by oltmannd on Wednesday, February 14, 2018 1:44 PM

blue streak 1

Have no idea if the problems caused this.  Crescent #20 lost 6 hours New Orleans - Atlanta

 

Most likely.  Sidings between Bham and Atlanta have been used to stage trains and hold cars.  The RR isn't completely plugged, but is moving very slowly.

-Don (Random stuff, mostly about trains - what else? http://blerfblog.blogspot.com/

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Posted by oltmannd on Wednesday, February 14, 2018 1:49 PM

Eastrail11
This was probably due to Amtrak not getting priority,

Absolutely not.  NS moves the Crescent with top priority.  When you have sidings plugged with expired trains, all you can do is fleet trains in a giant conga line. This is what's been happening.  A couple weeks ago, there were trains nose to tail in both directions from beyond Austell all the way to Atlanta.  

You can't pass cars on a two lane road when both directions are in a traffic jam. 

-Don (Random stuff, mostly about trains - what else? http://blerfblog.blogspot.com/

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Posted by MP173 on Thursday, February 15, 2018 7:20 AM

Somewhat unrelated but the truckload market is extremely stressed right now.  With the implementation of electronic logs, the demand/supply has completely tipped to truckers.  

Talked to one of my customers (regional truckload) and they are bumping rates 25% - 35% with no resistance from shippers.  This is creating a golden opportunity for intermodal...if the lanes are in place.

NS's loadings are generally down but intermodal is experiencing an uptick.  This might continue to grow.  There simply are not enough truck drivers out there now. 

The 550 - 700 mile market has changed dramatically as that cannot be handled "overnight" and is now a 2 day delivery...thus bumping rates signifcantly.

 

ed

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Posted by oltmannd on Thursday, February 15, 2018 8:53 AM

MP173

Somewhat unrelated but the truckload market is extremely stressed right now.  With the implementation of electronic logs, the demand/supply has completely tipped to truckers.  

Talked to one of my customers (regional truckload) and they are bumping rates 25% - 35% with no resistance from shippers.  This is creating a golden opportunity for intermodal...if the lanes are in place.

NS's loadings are generally down but intermodal is experiencing an uptick.  This might continue to grow.  There simply are not enough truck drivers out there now. 

The 550 - 700 mile market has changed dramatically as that cannot be handled "overnight" and is now a 2 day delivery...thus bumping rates signifcantly.

 

ed

 

The good news for NS is the "Premeir Corridor"  (ex-Conrail part) seems relatively unharmed by the near melt-down in the south.  It's the strongest part of the NS's intermodal franchise.  The Atlanta to NJ lane seems in pretty good shape, too.  The trouble is Atlanta to the west.

-Don (Random stuff, mostly about trains - what else? http://blerfblog.blogspot.com/

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