A Complete Breakdown Of Freight Railroad Spending In The US

Freight Train

The Association of American Railroads (AAR) announced yesterday that it plans to spend a record $13 billion on the nation’s freight railroads and hire more than 15,000 new employees in 2012.

“Unlike trucks, barges or airlines, America’s freight railroads operate on infrastructure they own, build and maintain themselves so taxpayers don’t have to. And this year they are investing at a record rate to meet the demands of the recovering economy,” Edward R. Hamberger, AAR President and CEO, said in a press release

Freight railroads, which move everything from lumber to food to automobiles, transport more than 42 per cent of the nation’s cargo.

Since 1980, railroads have invested $480 billion into rail network and in recent years have spent “roughly 17 per cent of their revenue on capital expenditures,” according to AAR. In 2010, the cost to run the railroads was $42.82 billion and the cost of growing and modernizing them was $9.8 billion. 

$10,221,515,000 in wages and $2,337,901,000 in employee benefits including health benefits, welfare and pension

$7,837,669,000 in taxes

$7,892,969,000 in fuel

$12,336,903,000 in contractor services, leases, rents, insurance and other expenses

$2,195,433,000 in materials and supplies to maintain the railroads

$2,372,575,000 in rail and other track materials

$1,571,662,000 in railroad ties

$882,849,000 in ballast

$717,907,000 in signals

$497,567,000 in bridges

$322,717,000 in land

$359,420,000 in freight cars

$891,726,000 in locomotives

$159,990,000 in highway equipment

$273,483,000 in computer equipment

Here's where America isn't spending ...

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