Forwarders say PSR ‘doesn’t work’

Forwarders are pointing to a problem in how trains get made up that is causing delays to cargoes.

The use of very long trains is posing some problems a lot like using very large container vessels. container ships can wait till they get sufficient cargo to make the voyage economically satisfactory. It’s done by ‘blanking’; sailings till there is enough cargo.

Railroads that use long trains are likewise waiting till they have enough cars to run the train. That is causing cargo delays, according to the forwarders.

The forwarders claim that this is contrary to the original PSR, which made trains meet the schedules they had promised. I think they’re right– the original PSR, championed by Hunter Harrison, the now deceased head to CN, CP, and CSX, was intended to make the trains run on time.

The practice of delaying trains is a cost control measure, and would be part of lean management, except that it has the effect of annoying customers, and denying them the one thing they want to pay for, on-time delivery. It’s no wonder they are angry.

By Alex Whiteman 13/04/2023

Forwarders demand change on US railways, as PSR ‘doesn’t work’ – The Loadstar

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