The Benefits of Rail Shipping


When trade and commerce are unavoidably increasing at an incredible rate, opting for a cost-efficient transport system to give the best results is necessary. Rail is superb when it collaborates with trucking to simplify the supply chain. It’s also known as intermodal transport, where freight movement from one place to another relies on multiple modes of transportation.

If you want to know the benefits of rail shipping, read on to understand each.

1. Cost-Effective

Regarding shipping large volumes of freight over a long distance, rail transport saves many expenses incurred in truck transport. It also saves labor costs since only one driver and guard can carry more load than road transport.

The fuel cost will be meager compared to over-the-road delivery due to its potential to move enormous quantities at a time. Trains only use approximately a third of the fuel it takes the truck to ship the same cargo.

2. Environmentally Friendly

Caring for our environment is inevitable, and rail freight is the best eco-friendly option by far compared to road, sea, and air freight. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency states that cargo railroads contribute only 0.6% of U.S. greenhouse gas emissions and 20% of transport-linked sources. Rail freight reduces exhaust emissions and can lower greenhouse gas emissions by 75%.

3. Safe and High-Powered With GPS Tracking

Railroad safety has magnificently improved over a decade, and today it’s considered one of the safest transport systems. The likelihood of accidents and breakdowns is minimal compared to other transport modes. GPS tracking on trains protects the freight in transit from losses and crimes like theft and burglary.

Trains have standardized transit schedules, unlike truck drivers, who can stop anywhere along the road, risking cargo in transit. Cargo carriers can pinpoint the exact spot of their client’s shipment and look into the milestones. The conveyors can also give comprehensive information on the container’s position and detect if something unforeseen occurs during the transit.

4. Fast and Reliable

Trains are not vulnerable to traffic congestion and disruptions of roads under construction delays. They can ship over long distances quickly and efficiently, and the shipment is estimated to arrive within a preset time frame. Sea and road transport is exposed to terrible weather conditions and congestion, unlike the railroad, hence helping to reduce the risk of unexpected delays.

5. Larger Capacity

Rail presents enormous carrying capacities adjusted further to suit your shipping needs. You can increase the volume by adding more wagons if the loads are too many. The rail can also accommodate many shapes and sizes of cargo, from the smallest to the largest, unlike trucks and planes, which have a limited capacity.

6. Convenient for Bulky Loads

Rail transport is quicker, more economical, and best suited for bulky cargo. Trains can handle a substantial volume of freight over a long distance. One double-stacked train can carry the same measure as 280 trucks.

7. Wider Reach

Railroads can assist in facilitating a door-to-door option via intermodal transport. A truck picks up the cargo from the terminal and drops it at its destination. Railroads reach all extensive markets across the U.S. from coast to coast.

8. Provides Employment Opportunities

Rail transportation is a significant aspect of national infrastructure. It has been consistently growing, providing jobs and opportunities to all people globally, both skilled and unskilled.

Rail in the Intermodal Strategy

Rail intermodal is the long-haul maneuver of transporting containers by rail combined with a truck or water variations at one or both ends, i.e., the origin and the destination points.

As seen above, the benefits of rail shipping as part of the intermodal strategy are significant.

Trains are used in the long-haul portion of the shipment when combining road and rail. Intermodal merges the best features of different transportation modes to cater to the efficient and cost-effective entire movement.

Bottom Line

From the several advantages of rail transport over other freight transporters, it’s worth considering it as a better option. Rail transport presents a way of becoming unconventional from the rising fuel prices, making it the most cost-effective mode of cargo transit.

The rail transport system is cost-efficient, fast, and environmentally friendly for shipping people’s freight. Rail has improved transport speed, safety, convenience for heavy loads, and reliability. It emits minimal emissions compared to other forms of shipment.

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