In an attempt to compete more closely with trucks, Union Pacific and Norfolk Southern railways are teaming up to offer a guaranteed, on-time delivery option between Los Angeles and Atlanta.
Any load that does not arrive when scheduled will be free, say the railroads.
The nation’s largest railroad, Omaha-based Union Pacific operates more than 35,000 miles of track over 23 states in the western two-thirds of the United States. Norfolk Southern operates 21,800 miles of track in 22 states, the District of Columbia and the province of Ontario.
Handling consumer goods ranging from televisions to clothes and toys, Union Pacific will handle shipments between Los Angeles and Memphis and Norfolk Southern will take the loads between Memphis and Atlanta.
“We believe there’s tremendous opportunity to bring that truck freight to rail intermodal with products that meet customer requirements,” Randy Blackburn, Union Pacific vice president of intermodal marketing, told the Associated Press.
The railroads will offer three tiers of service, including guaranteed delivery of goods on time.
They also are looking into streamlined delivery of goods at points in between Atlanta and Los Angeles.
CSX Transportation and Union Pacific have also worked together to speed the movement of fruit and vegetables from the West Coast to the East Coast, and Union Pacific has worked withCanadian Pacific Railway to improve service between Canada and the United States.
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