7,000 new cars: CSX stocks up for tripled coal exports

If you've recently noticed some spiffy new rail cars rolling o'er the countryside, there's a reason: CSX has been bolstering its fleet with about 7,000 new cars to service the company's massive coal piers in Newport News.

The fresh black hopper cars seen here appear to be the aluminum BethGon II model manufactured by FreightCar America. The company, which has a manufacturing facility in the heart of downtown Roanoke, indicates that each car holds 4,520 cubic feet of coal, a maximum payload of 122 tons, a nine-ton increase over flat-bottomed predecessors.

According to CSX, while domestic coal sales to utilities have fallen due to price competition from natural gas, coal exports have soared from around 13 million tons about five years earlier to 40.2 million tons last year. In all, CSX measures its coal business at 1.5 million carloads last year, 24 percent of its rail volume and 32 percent of its revenue.

original headline: Sleek and black: New CSX coal cars roll through

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Great to know there are still products made in America.

I wonder if this means longer trains running through Charlottesville ? With the bridge out at JPA the at grade rail crossing at Shamrock is a main thoroughfare to and from UVa.

I hate that they no longer use the Chessy logo on their trains.

It's good that all those mountaintops to the west of us have shiny new cars to ride in. I was hoping that this article was going to be about Mr. Spencer riding the rails to points west - discovering the landscape from a vantage point you don't read about much anymore. Perhaps going to discover the Big Rock Candy Mountain if they haven't mined it all yet?

I wish there was a way to generate power that doesn't require entire trainloads of coal to fuel the power stations. Or nuclear means either. I wish we had a clean, environmentally safe way to make power.

Coal and railroads made America. The railroad industry was one of the few things that pulled the US out of the Great Depression. They are working on cleaner coal for energy - though they should have been working on it decades ago. They should also work on making the industry SAFER. If we as a people didn't demand lights and tv past midnight, gadgets that are all powered by electricity - perhaps there would be less of a stamp on the environment. It starts with us. Those complaining - unplug.

^^ Typical hook reader response. Runnin' the mouth, on full blast mode full of assumptions and self righteousness.

NancyDrew --

CSX trains are on a different track, the JPA bridge being out will not matter. The grade level crossings next to the downtown mall and Main street are another story.

-- B

@Wishin and hopin - you are obviously a Hook reader too or you wouldn't be here. Assumptions? No, my family was part of the Railroad Industry and the fact is that in 1929 when people were broke one family member was worth over 20 million.

And it is a fact, we are utilizing more and more electricity than we did 20 years ago. We demand it. If you have a problem with the energy utilized do something about it - you are typical of most of American who complains and does absolutely nothing and then points fingers at people who call you out. And it wasn't just directed to you but all of you who complain and do nothing.

The great depression lasted well into the 1930's, in fact the CCC camps were disbanded at the beginning of WW2, thats what pulled us out of a depression, war, not the railroads. The railroads were for Box Car Willy to travel around on.

Unfortunately, the EPA may get its way- coal may be thing of the past and SOON.............100's of thousand of jobs and the economies of a number of States are coming under attack.

Ah - perspective - in the 1930s and 1940s my family was being sent overseas to Europe and Australia for the Railroad company. So obviously it wasn't about "Box Car Willie". There was no Interstate System, no big rigs - goods and supplies were transported by railroad. People traveled by railroad not car and livestock was transported by railroad too.

Without the rails to transport the supplies for war - it wouldn't have happened or the outcome wouldn't have happened. Lest you forget history and Roosevelt's New Deal which included industry - the railroads.

@Skip D - coal will become part of the past when oil does. There are too many deep pockets and influence of our Government from those industries. EPA or not, they don't have that power because they are just part of the government. Afterall, "coporations are people too" (sarcasim there).