The railroads have made progress towards returning to normal service in areas impacted by Harvey and Irma.
In Texas, the three major railroads had effectively restored service on their networks by the end of last week. Union Pacific (UP) announced that Gulf Coast rail operations have been fully restored – BNSF and KCS made similar announcements. However, all warned of continued delays for some time while the railroads work through backlog and comply with imposed speed restrictions.
In Florida and other parts of the Southeast affected by Irma, railroads have mostly returned to normalcy. Intermodal rail service to areas north of Central Florida has largely been restored, but intermodal shippers can still expect delays of up to three days for railed cargo moving through the Southeast. Class I rail carriers CSX Transportation and Norfolk Southern Railway, as well as Class II regional railroad Florida East Coast Railway (FECR), reported service is coming back online with some limitations:
- CSX Transportation (CSXT) has resumed normal train operations into Waycross, GA, Savannah, GA, and Tampa, FL. As of last week, there was still only limited service into Jacksonville, FL, where the railroad is based. Additional updates on restoration of service to other affected areas was not available.
- Norfolk Southern service details were scarce. The Jacksonville facility experienced power outages in the aftermath of Irma and upon restoration, the facility is now dealing with terminal congestion and chassis shortages.
- FEC began running normal mainline operations 9/16.