Coal Network Update for Friday, October 9, 2020
Operating teams are focused on aligning resources as effectively as possible with higher freight shipment demand. For the week ending October 3, total volume on the network exceeded 200,000 units for the first time in 2020.
Overall car velocity was essentially unchanged versus the prior week and slightly higher than the average level for September. Average terminal dwell increased but remains steady with last month. Our local service compliance measure, reflecting efficiency in the handling of carload freight, continues to exceed 91 percent.
Preparing for Hurricane Delta
Hurricane Delta is approaching the southwestern Louisiana coast and is expected to make landfall this evening. The hurricane, with current maximum sustained winds of 110 miles per hour, is already bringing heavy rainfall to much of Louisiana as flood watches are in effect across the state.
An embargo was issued yesterday affecting all shipments designated for interchange in New Orleans. BNSF is re-routing some traffic as needed while several trains designated to move into the area are holding until rail operations are safe to resume.
Throughout the week, BNSF has been preparing for the hurricane, including the activation of an around-the-clock Command Center to address any impacts to our network and direct recovery efforts that are needed. Additional resources have been staged at various locations to address track outages as quickly as possible. Our operating teams are in communication with local, state and federal emergency personnel as well as other rail carriers in the region.
For impacted customers, this online form is available to report information regarding a facility that has experienced damage and/or where service is suspended. This information will greatly assist us in any recovery efforts.
If you have questions about your shipment(s), please contact BNSF Customer Support at 888-428-2673.
Service Expectations for the Week Ahead
Operating conditions in the Gulf Coast are expected to improve quickly as Hurricane Delta moves out of the region this weekend. For much of the BNSF network, favorable weather for early October is anticipated with no major storm systems in the forecast during the next several days.
The risk for wildfire activity will remain high in parts of California during the upcoming week. BNSF teams remain in frequent communication with fire officials and will continue to assist in response efforts.