Number one at sucking time from your day, that is.
The rail yards in Pittsburgh are the absolute worst in the nation! (You thought I was going to say the Pirates. That would be incorrect, but it feels like it’s true.)
At 405 minutes, you have more than enough time to roll on over and watch the Pirates lose to, well, anyone they might be playing. The Cubs might be the exception, but hey, they’re the Cubs!
And we’re talking Pittsburgh and the area’s current Time Suck O’Meter champion railyard.
The SONAR chart above gives you an idea of just how bad it is. Crushing the competition and even beating the over-the-road national average wait by 25 minutes.
So how does a railyard explode for a 60.1% increase in wait times and eclipse the 3.5-hour mark?
Check out the SONAR chart below.
Are railyards influenced by capacity flows?
Yes, check out the yellow line above. That represents inbound rail cars to the Pittsburgh market. This index is all-inclusive, so we are talking about loaded and unloaded capacity of all sizes.
Back to the first chart for a brief moment to look at the wait times in May on the chart to the right. Pittsburgh was in the middle of the pack back then and the yellow line on the next chart gives you the reason.
May saw rail capacity exit the Pittsburgh market, which significantly reduced inbound moves. The diverging yellow and blue lines present a great visual of the situation. Blue represents outbound container volumes and yellow shows inbound.
This was around the time we saw wait times at most railyards begin to increase. The increase caused talk about imposing fines on chassis and intermodal box delays.
Pittsburgh has not been immune to this situation and in fact, is feeling the worst of it as of late. Many consignees are using boxes as flexible, or not so flexible, storage. (Seems more like long-term warehousing.)
Following the timeline, we see that the third week in May brought a flip in the rail market in Pittsburgh. Inbound volumes in yellow surged, while outbound volumes have dropped off a cliff.
But, that means more capacity in the market, Dude!
Yes, it does. It also shows that no one is sending empties back out of the Pittsburgh market. The blue and yellow lines represent all sizes, as well as loaded and empty railcars.
Flexible storage in Pittsburgh is eating your lunch! (I ain’t talking about y’ones guys’ perogies either.)
Peace and love