In the past few years, intermodal transportation has witnessed an increased growth.
Intermodal transportation services involves the movement of truck trailers and shipping containers by rail. It is also combined with truck movement at either one or both ends. However, the truck movement is usually significantly shorter. It remains one of the biggest contributors to freight rail revenue in the US. In 2015, more than 13 million units were moved, through rail freight transportation. Since 2013, more than 50% of shippers have shifted their freight to intermodal, according to the Association of American Railroads (AAR). This can be attributed to the following factors.
Curbing Industry Challenges
Truck driver shortage and retention have been common challenges affecting the supply chain industry. Currently, industry driver turnover is more than 90%. It is also estimated that there are around 40,000 truck driver jobs, which are still unfilled. However, intermodal transportation has come in to solve this problem. A fully loaded train can haul up to 300 containers at once. This significantly reduces the needed number of drivers.
Intermodal transportation is environmentally friendly. It is also a cost-effective means of transporting all forms of products from coal, grain, manufactured food to produce. First, this form of transportation significantly reduces the number of trucks on the road, thus reducing emissions of greenhouse gasses. Additionally, intermodal transportation has incorporated the use of advanced computer software, which calculates the most fuel-efficient speed to be used for a particular train route. Railroads are also developing strategies that will involve double stacking containers. This will increase efficiency and generate further savings.
Enhanced Infrastructure and Technology
Apart from the reducing diesel prices, intermodal continues to present numerous benefits. With the surging popularity of intermodal transportation, rail lines are making huge financial investments towards improving equipment and infrastructure. Old locomotives are being replaced by new ones thanks to the introduction of new technology. Technology has also been significantly improved in refrigerated intermodal containers. This has further increased the capability of intermodal transportation to service products which require temperature control. Hubs and terminals are currently under expansion and construction, in anticipation of this growing sector while preventing overcrowding.
With the above factors, combined with speed, reliability, and cost-savings, intermodal will continue growing especially in the shipping industry. It will continue playing a very significant role in the supply chain industry. With the increasing consumer and population demand, intermodal transportation will soon become a very important part of the national transportation network.
For all your logistics, intermodal transportation, trucking, or warehousing and distribution needs in the Bay Area, R&A Trucking Company is the perfect choice.
Family owned and operated for nearly 40 years, we have a proven track record of success with our clients. With a fleet of over 100 trucks and a 135,000 sq ft Oakland warehouse, we have the resources and flexibility to meet demands both large and small. For inquiries into how we may be of service, simply call (510)632-7112 or Click Here.