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Union Pacific Railroad and Norfolk Southern Introduce Gulf Coast Flyer for Chemical Shipments between the Gulf Coast and Northeast, Southeast

Omaha, Neb., and Norfolk, Va. - Oct 26, 2009


Union Pacific Railroad and Norfolk Southern today introduced Gulf Coast Flyer, a rail service for the safe transport of chemicals between the Union Pacific-served southern Texas and Louisiana regions and Norfolk Southern destinations across the northeastern and southeastern United States.

Gulf Coast Flyer is designed to build on improved routing and enhanced operations coordination between the two railroads, leaders in serving the chemical marketplace. This product promotes expedited service for customers between the Gulf Coast region and major markets across the Northeast and Southeast. Eastbound and westbound shipments between the two railroads connect at the Salem, Ill., and New Orleans, La., gateways.

Union Pacific and Norfolk Southern made a combined investment of $740 million in terminals, main lines, bridges and sidings along Gulf Coast Flyer lanes from 2006-08 to strengthen service and enhance safety and reliability. As a result, transit times for shipments moving in major joint lanes improved by more than 20 percent for shippers. At the same time, the consistency of service improved by 10 percent.

“The investment in these lanes combined with increased coordination between our two railroads directly benefits our customers,” said Diane Duren, vice president and general manager of Chemicals for Union Pacific. “Transit times in these lanes are faster, which lowers inventory carrying costs for customers. It also allows them to turn their private equipment faster, getting better utilization from their assets. Service reliability also is improved, providing our customers with greater supply chain efficiencies.”

In addition to the focus on improved service and coordination, the two railroads have worked to continue their focus on safety. An important part of that effort has been through ongoing training efforts with TRANSCAER (Transportation Community Awareness and Emergency Response), the voluntary national outreach effort to help communities prepare for and respond to a possible hazardous material transportation incident. Working with TRANSCAER, Union Pacific and Norfolk Southern have helped train more than 5,000 responders in communities along Gulf Coast Flyer lanes since 2006.

“As we work together to offer a faster, more reliable product for customers, safety remains a primary focus for both of our teams,” said Joe Osborne, vice president - Chemicals for Norfolk Southern. “With Gulf Coast Flyer service, we offer the safety and environmental advantages of shipping by rail, along with the expedited transit and reliable service advantages customers require in these critical markets.”

For more information about Gulf Coast Flyer, visit or

About Union Pacific

Union Pacific Corporation owns one of America’s leading transportation companies. Its principal operating company, Union Pacific Railroad, links 23 states in the western two-thirds of the country. Union Pacific serves many of the fastest-growing U.S. population centers and provides Americans with a fuel-efficient, environmentally responsible and safe mode of freight transportation. Union Pacific’s diversified business mix includes Agricultural Products, Automotive, Chemicals, Energy, Industrial Products and Intermodal. The railroad emphasizes excellent customer service and offers competitive routes from all major West Coast and Gulf Coast ports to eastern gateways. Union Pacific connects with Canada’s rail systems and is the only railroad serving all six major gateways to Mexico, making it North America’s premier rail franchise.

Union Pacific contact
Tom Lange | Media | 402-544-3560 |

About Norfolk Southern

Norfolk Southern Corporation (NYSE: NSC) is one of the nation’s premier transportation companies. Its Norfolk Southern Railway subsidiary operates approximately 21,000 route miles in 22 states and the District of Columbia, serves every major container port in the eastern United States, and provides efficient connections to other rail carriers. Norfolk Southern operates the most extensive intermodal network in the East and is a major transporter of coal and industrial products.

Norfolk Southern contact

Frank Brown | Media | 757-629-2710 |