Train volume westbound into Port of Vancouver through April 2024

RailState, the rail industry’s only provider of real-time rail network visibility, independently tracks all freight rail movements across Canada in real-time. 

Western Ports

Port of Vancouver

Freight volume westbound to the Port of Vancouver dipped slightly in April, falling 1.0% compared to March. The biggest % changes came from Automotive trains, which increased 57.1% from the previous month, and Sulphur unit trains, which fell 38.5%. These trains represent a small portion of volume into the port, accounting for only 5% of westbound train volume combined.

Grain trains were the only major commodity type with a noticeable increase, growing 7.8% over the previous month. Unit trains were mostly down.

Coal Unit: -2.6%
Tank Car Unit trains: -13.0%
Potash Unit: -17.9%

Despite these declines, overall train volume through the Port of Vancouver was higher in April, driven by increases in Intermodal traffic, which we’ve covered in a separate report.  

CPKC’s share of total carload volume into the port was 6 points higher than CN’s. 

market share to Port of Vancouver April 2024

Prince Rupert

Freight volume to the Port of Prince Rupert fell 13.3% in April. Manifest volume was down 51.2% from March, and Grain volume fell 12.8%. 

Tank Car Unit trains were up 13.3% and Coal Unit volume increased 5%. 

Prince Rupert also saw significant increases in Intermodal volume in April.

Rail volume to port of prince rupert january to April 2024 by train type

Eastern Ports

Halifax

Train volume to Halifax increased marginally in April, up 1.7%, led by growth in Manifest trains. Grain trains fell 20.8% and Automotive trains were down 10% from March.

Rail volume to port of halifax january to April 2024 by train type

Port of Sydney

Train volume to the Port of Sydney was unchanged from March.

Rail volume to port of sydney january to April 2024 by train type

Thunder Bay

Train volume to Thunder Bay grew 34% in April, driven by a 76% increase in Grain volume. Grain train volume to Thunder Bay has increased from the start of the year and now accounts for 47% of total train volume into Thunder Bay.

Rail volume to Thunder Bay April 2023 to April 2024 by train type

CPKC moves the lion’s share of carloads into the port but CN’s share has increased in recent months. In January, CN accounted for only 10% of volume to the port.

Thunder Bay April 2024 market share CN and CPKC

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