Norfolk Southern Corporation (NYSE:NSC) has rolled out a pilot incentive program for intermodal shipping partners that aims to drive market efficiencies, grow capacity at its international intermodal terminals, and advance key sustainability goals.
The Dual Mission Reward Program is being tested at Landers Intermodal Facility in Chicago, the company’s largest terminal handling international freight, and at the railroad’s Kansas City Intermodal Facility. Under the industry-first pilot, truck carriers and steamship lines can earn a $200 incentive every time a drayage driver brings in and departs with a shipping container, completing a “dual mission.”
Norfolk Southern developed the initiative while brainstorming with customers and truckers on ways to help unclog pandemic-related bottlenecks across the transportation supply-chain. Beyond increasing efficiencies, the initiative has the potential to generate significant sustainability benefits.
“Trucks leaving the terminal that were formerly empty now become loaded, productive miles for the truckers,” said D’Andrae Larry, group vice president of international marketing at Norfolk Southern. “The amount of truck time saved by gaining an immediate load versus leaving the terminal to find a load, the emissions reduction, the employee productivity gains are all wins for sustainability in the marketplace.”
At Landers alone, Norfolk Southern calculates the initiative has the potential to eliminate roughly 46,000 truck trips, reduce fuel use by 546,000 gallons, and avoid over 5,600 metric tons of carbon emissions annually if truckers complete a dual mission at least 50% of the time.
“This program offers an innovative solution to a supply-chain issue that’s a win for everybody – the truck drivers, the environment, local communities, and us,” said Josh Raglin, chief sustainability officer at Norfolk Southern. “This is a perfect example of how we are applying a sustainability mindset to everyday business situations.”
Norfolk Southern plays a vital role in the global marketplace. Over the past three years, the railroad has transported an average 1.5 million containers and trailers annually of international goods that move on rails, trucks, and ships during some part of their journey between the United States and Asia, Europe, and other global destinations. That’s roughly 20% of the company’s total average traffic volumes in those years.
Currently, truckers who deliver an international container to a Norfolk Southern intermodal terminal leave empty about 85% of the time. That’s due largely to marketplace challenges associated with coordinating the journey of containers between customers in the U.S. and abroad. Norfolk Southern pays the $200 reward once a truck carrier or steamship line completes dual missions at least half the time over a certain period.
Increasing fluidity and throughput of freight moving through the terminals creates capacity, enabling Norfolk Southern to support customers’ growth while sharing an incentive with the marketplace, Larry added.
“We continually look for ways to partner with our customers and the marketplace to drive efficiency and achieve our goals for growth and productivity,” Larry said.
Customers seeking additional information about the program can contact Norfolk Southern Intermodal Customer Service at 800-497-2919.
About Norfolk Southern
Norfolk Southern Corporation (NYSE: NSC) is one of the nation’s premier transportation companies, moving the goods and materials that drive the U.S. economy. Norfolk Southern connects customers to markets and communities to economic opportunity, with safe, reliable, and cost-effective shipping solutions. The company’s service area includes 22 states and the District of Columbia, every major container port in the eastern United States, and a majority of the U.S. population and manufacturing base.
Norfolk Southern Media Inquiries:
Media Relations, 404-420-4444
Meghan Achimasi, 470-867-4807