Tuesday, September 22, 2020

UNITED STATES RAILWAYS:

The US rail network, with an operating route length over 250,000 km, is the biggest in the world. Freight lines constitute about 80% of the country's total rail network, while the total passenger network spans about 35,000 km. The US freight rail net work consists of 538 railroads (seven class I railroads, 21 regional railroads and 510 local railroads) operated by private organisations. Union Pacific Railroad and BNSF railway are among the largest freight railroad networks





The system was largely built by 1910, but then trucks arrived to eat away the freight traffic, and automobiles (and later airplanes) to devour the passenger traffic. After 1940, the use of diesel electric locomotives made for much more efficient operations that needed fewer workers on the road and in repair shops.

The National Railroad Passenger Corporation, doing business as Amtrak , is a passenger railroad service that provides medium and long-distance intercity service in the contiguous United States and to nine Canadian cities.

Founded in 1971 as a quasi-public corporation to operate many U.S. passenger rail routes, Amtrak receives a combination of state and federal subsidies but is managed as a for-profit organisation . The United States government through the Secretary of the United States Department of Transportation owns all the company's issued and outstanding preferred stock. 

Amtrak serves more than 500 destinations in 46 states and three Canadian provinces, operating more than 300 trains daily over 21,400 miles (34,000 km) of track. Amtrak owns approximately 623 miles of this track and operates an additional 132 miles of track. Some track sections allow trains to run as fast as 150 mph (240 km/h).

In fiscal year 2018, Amtrak served 31.7 million passengers and had $3.4 billion in revenue, while employing more than 20,000 people. Nearly 87,000 passengers ride more than 300 Amtrak trains on a daily basis. Nearly two-thirds of passengers come from the 10 largest metropolitan areas; 83% of passengers travel on routes shorter than 400 miles (645 km). 

A series of bankruptcies and consolidations left the rail system in the hands of a few large operations by the 1980s. Almost all long-distance passenger traffic was shifted to Amtrak in 1971. Commuter rail service is provided near a few major cities such as New York City, Chicago, Boston, Philadelphia, Baltimore, and the District of Columbia. Computerization and improved equipment steadily reduced employment, which peaked at 2.1 million in 1920, falling to 1.2 million in 1950 and 215,000 in 2010. Route mileage peaked at 254,251 miles (409,177 km) in 1916 and fell to 139,679 miles (224,792 km) in 2011. 

Freight railroads continue to play an important role in the United States' economy, especially for moving imports and exports using containers, and for shipments of coal and, since 2010, of oil. According to the British news magazine The Economist, "They are universally recognized in the industry as the best in the world." Productivity rose 172% between 1981 and 2000, while rates rose 55% (after accounting for inflation). Rail's share of the American freight market rose to 43%, the highest for any rich country.

Intercity passenger service, once a large and vital part of the nation’s passenger transportation network, plays a limited role as compared to transportation patterns in many other countries. Due to under investment and poor technological up gradation. Since private players are not interested to invest more.



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