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43 visor may move his own trains in preference to the short 1. Signaling restrictions or optimal signaling lines. In this manner, the short-line operation may become 2. Lack of locomotive power and freight cars congested as well, and its crews may "time out" on the hours 3. Switching inefficiency of service law. Since the short line does not own the facility, 4. Speed restrictions in urban areas it may feel it has no ability to improve the situation. 5. Vertical double-stack restrictions. Signaling and telecommunications upgrades are a major area in which increased investment is needed. There are sev- 4.2.3 Deepwater Ports and eral issues: First, it is often difficult to obtain skilled man- Inland Waterways power for the design, installation, and maintenance of the industry's signaling equipment, much of which is outdated. Factors limiting the ability of external transport carriers Second, technology is advancing at a pace that sometimes (ship, rail, and truck) to access a terminal facility in a timely and causes managers to be concerned that new investments will efficient manner and to optimize the freight movement through be obsolete quickly. Third, developments such as Positive the terminal constitute a constraint. This includes any factor Train Control (PTC) are expensive, would need to be imple- that causes delay in either receipt or delivery of cargo. Another mented over extensive territory, and should be interopera- substantial constraint on mobility comes from the mismatched ble among connecting but also competing railroads. structure of labor resource availabilities in the various elements Communications, signaling, and information (CS&I) of the transport chain. Ship operators, longshoremen, motor projects always seem to be on the critical path for capacity carriers, railroad crews, warehouse operators, and other inter- additions--and similarly, worker skills in CS&I seem ested parties work on substantially different and mismatched always to be among the most constrained. schedules, and efficient transfer cannot take place unless there Locomotive and freight car investments are considered is synchronization. to constrain freight mobility by rail. While equipment is Of relevance to inland waterways cargo movements are mobile, i.e., not fixed in location (which reduces one kind of factors that cause traffic restrictions. For example, insufficient resource misallocation risk), it is also peripatetic (i.e., it is clearance or flooding that can cause traffic to slow or stop will hard to constrain to its highest and best uses, as good asset result in delay. Freight mobility constraints result from the utilization principles require). It is always a challenge for inadequacy of the capacity of freight (intermodal) connectors railroads to balance the supply of equipment with the to meet demand as well as regulatory and operational factors. demand for it. Innovations such as shipper-provided rolling The main freight mobility constraints facing port termi- stock, efficient pooling of intermodal and auto-rack cars nal operations can be generally categorized as regulatory and through TTX Company (which supplies railcars and related operational, e.g., driver shortage, information technology (IT)/ freight car management services to the North American rail information lag. The respondents all agreed that safety regu- industry) , and de-prescription of per diem rates have helped lations do not impede efficient port terminal operations. to make provision of rolling stock more efficient. Improved Planning and environmental regulations (e.g., requirements near- and mid-term forecasting of customer demand for related to clean air biodiesel fuel) in and of themselves do not equipment would help. These efforts could be further impose unwarranted burdens on mobility and operations. enhanced by implementation of reservation and auction The bigger burden is the erratic and unpredictable fashion in systems yet to be developed. which the environmental laws and regulations are applied in Proper information for operational management has been a the development of mobility projects. problem in the rail industry over the years. New investments As with environmental regulations, the security regulations are being made more or less continuously, but opportuni- in themselves are not considered to be significant burdens on ties for improvement still exist. mobility. Security regulations and requirements add to oper- ating and transport costs, and cause modest inefficiencies in Some contend that most of the interruptions to velocity the use of space at transport nodes. However, their overall come at and around interchange points. Much of the friction impacts on mobility and velocity are modest and manageable. is caused by interference with people movements (passenger The following causes of constraints were identified. trains, peak hour traffic, etc.). Competition between passenger and freight rail is increasing, causing substantial interruptions Operational Constraints to flow in urban areas. The mismatched availability of labor and related resources between the transport modes at the inter- The following are examples of significant constraints that change points exacerbates the problem. emanate from operational problems: Survey respondents representing short-line rail and regional railroads identified the following as the most severe and per- Mismatched structure of labor resources resulting in inef- sistent freight mobility constraints: ficient transfers