The operation remains focused on generating improved service performance while continuing to move strong freight volumes on the network. Overall car and train velocity were each up slightly versus the prior week. Terminal dwell was significantly reduced after a brief rise associated with Labor Day.
While also reduced from the previous week, the number of trains held remains elevated and above previous September levels. BNSF continues to deploy new crew members each month across the network, and our operating teams are working aggressively to match resources as effectively as possible.
As Hurricane Florence brings heavy rain and strong winds to parts of the Southeast, train flows into the region have been significantly impacted. BNSF is working with eastern carriers regarding embargoes that have been issued as well as managing interchange traffic holding at various facilities. Customers with shipments destined to move to/from the area should expect continued delays until rail operations return to normal.
Throughout the year, we have highlighted our major fourth main track expansion project in Amarillo. As we reported, work was completed early last week, and the new additional track is now in service. The following video highlights the collaborative efforts required to complete the project on this busy portion of our network and the benefits that this additional fourth main track will now provide to our customers.
Several more significant expansion projects are scheduled for completion in both our North and South Regions this year. We look forward to highlighting each of these projects and the benefits they will provide to our customers in subsequent updates.
Service Expectations for the Week Ahead
Favorable operating conditions are expected across much of the BNSF network. Interchange traffic destined for some locations in the Southeast may experience ongoing delays from Hurricane Florence.
Daily work windows for track expansion and maintenance work are scheduled next week on key portions of our Northern Transcon between Washington and Montana. Train delays are also possible on our Ft. Worth Subdivision, which runs between Fort Worth and the Texas/Oklahoma border, due to maintenance work taking place in multiple locations.
Below is a look at the key operational performance categories for the week ending September 13:
Total trains held for the week decreased by more than 21 percent with an average of 129.3 trains held versus 164.4 trains held during the prior week.
Versus the September 2017 average: up by 81.1%
Total trains on the system was up by nearly one percent versus the prior week with an average of 1,621 trains on the system.
Versus the September 2017 average: up by 11.1%
Car velocity, measured in miles per day (MPD), was up by nearly one percent at 197.5 MPD versus 196.3 MPD recorded the prior week.
Versus the September 2017 average: down by 11.7%
Train velocity, measured in miles per hour (MPH), was up by more than two percent versus the prior week at 16.7 MPH.
Versus the September 2017 average: down by 11.2%
Total volume was down by more than nine percent from the prior week with 191,151 units moved in Week 36 (ending September 8, which includes the Labor Day holiday) versus 210,925 units in Week 35 (ending September 1).
Terminal dwell decreased by nearly five percent versus the prior week at 24.9 hours.
Versus the September 2017 average: up by 1.8%
As always, we thank you for your business and appreciate the opportunity to serve as your transportation service provider. We welcome your feedback and questions.