Grain movement is expected to pick up over the next few weeks following the slow-down during the holiday season and the closure of the Port of Thunder Bay.
David Przednowek the assistant vice president of grain for CN Rail says throughout December they've seen a continued pattern of underutilization of grain supply chain capacity:
"Grain shipping week 19 had been the highest single week for grain movement going back to week 14 at around 600,000 tonnes. That's still well below the maximum sustainable supply chain capacity on CN. Then we had a couple of weeks just north of 500,000 tons and then for week 22 that would be of course the week of December 24th we dropped down just under 400,000 tonnes. So we're expecting things to pop back up here."
He notes that the mild winter to date has allowed for strong, consistent grain car movement, but we've started to see a change in the weather.
"There is some Arctic air outbreak starting to develop here for the first half of January. Of course, when you hit trackside temperatures of -25°C, that's when CN needs to implement its train length restrictions to maintain safe rail operations. So we'll see what Mother Nature brings us here over the next couple of weeks."
To hear Glenda-Lee's conversation with David Przednowek the assistant vice president of grain for CN Rail click on the link below.