NS Triple Crown Basically Done

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CN9634
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Joined: Fri Jul 09, 2004 5:50 pm

NS Triple Crown Basically Done

Post by CN9634 » Fri Sep 18, 2015 3:05 pm

Hello All,

Today, Triple Crown is restructuring to basically a one lane service.... this is essentially the end of traditional Triple Crown Service as we know it.


http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases ... 45559.html" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

QB 52.32
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Re: NS Triple Crown Basically Done

Post by QB 52.32 » Sun Sep 27, 2015 9:32 am

Makes sense in this era of tight rail capacity and financial pressure from declining coal traffic as well as the much better economics and efficiency of doublestack technology as an alternative either as a direct replacement or in a general sense of where to spend time and money.

XBNSFer
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Location: Bridgeport, CT

Re: NS Triple Crown Basically Done

Post by XBNSFer » Sun Jul 07, 2019 9:00 am

QB 52.32 wrote:
Sun Sep 27, 2015 9:32 am
Makes sense in this era of tight rail capacity and financial pressure from declining coal traffic as well as the much better economics and efficiency of doublestack technology as an alternative either as a direct replacement or in a general sense of where to spend time and money.
"Much better economics and efficiency" of doublestack "technology" has nothing to do with it. The benefit of doublestacks is over conventional piggyback (TOFC/COFC), due to less equipment weight (or "tare" weight) per "box." Doublestack "technology" just feeds the conventional "how much cargo can I cram on a given stretch of track" and "how huge a train can I run" philosophies, it doesn't promote "economics" or "efficiency" except when compared to conventional TOFC/COFC. Roadrailers didn't catch on only because they couldn't be intermixed with conventional intermodal equipment (and because nobody could independently implement a nationwide network, given the lack of coast-to-coast systems as of yet) and run in monster trains, not because of "economics" or "efficiency." Roadrailers have less tare weight per "box" than doublestacks, even with "bogies," given they eliminate the need for a separate railcar entirely. Roadrailers also don't have the wind-resistance issues of 20+' high trains with big spaces between "boxes," and have essentially zero slack, cutting fuel costs to the bone. Nor do Roadrailers have clearance issues requiring massive expenditures to allow them to run - they can go anywhere tracks go. Terminal costs are sky-high for double stack, dirt cheap for Roadrailers.

You should have stopped at "tight rail capacity." Roadrailers can do something that doublestacks could never do, which is to make the railroads a legitimate competitor in hauling high value cargo in short haul traffic lanes. "Tight rail capacity" is the only thing in the way of that, but more and more hauls are, from a railroad perspective, "short," which means the continued embracing of doublestacks for intermodal to the exclusion of all else is going to make that business increasingly marginal as time goes on. The high speed, premium service such high value, short haul freight requires is not a good "fit" for doublestacks, because the terminal costs make it UNeconomic and INefficient.
GE, not EMD, makes the best locomotives now; has for over 20 years. Get over it.

Cowford
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Location: Florida

Re: NS Triple Crown Basically Done

Post by Cowford » Fri Jul 12, 2019 1:03 pm

This reminds me of the old joke: Nobody goes there anymore; it's too crowded.

Roadrailer has, unfortunately, failed in just about every market in which it has been introduced - here and abroad. And it's ALL about economics and efficiency. (Interoperability, train length restrictions and freight hauled per train-foot are integral measurements of both.)

mtuandrew
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Re: NS Triple Crown Basically Done

Post by mtuandrew » Sat Jul 13, 2019 5:48 am

How much is due to reduced auto plant capacity? I understand that the Big 3 used Roadrailers fairly extensively, while few others did.

Related, did any other roads take Roadrailers in interchange? KCS-NS seems an obvious choice for transshipment from American Rust Belt auto plants to Mexican plants and return. So do CP and CN, to and from Canadian plants, and BNSF from Pacific ports.

QB 52.32
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Joined: Sat Mar 08, 2008 8:05 am

Re: NS Triple Crown Basically Done

Post by QB 52.32 » Sat Jul 13, 2019 7:14 am

Triple Crown's reduction has come as a result of NS' need to improve their operating performance while faced with the investment decision whether to replace a large part of the roadrailer fleet but up against the economic superiority of domestic doublestack. At its peak, Triple Crown served Dallas and Minneapolis/St Paul and other points as well, I believe, via rights over connecting carriers.

Because domestic doublestack is superior, that's the technology that serves the Mexican auto production supply chain.

As an aside, I chuckle when I see Triple Crown management extolling the viability of short-haul intermodal, when in fact, they pursued viability by pursuing medium- and long-haul traffic. Even with that strategy the technology could not achieve long-term economic viability.

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