Having the right equipment is critical to moving your cargo safely and efficiently. In fact, Kansas City Southern has one of the youngest fleets of locomotives among the Class I railroads in our effort to have both efficient and environmentally responsible engines to move your shipments.
Each year we add to our pool of assets new cars and equipment to transport your goods in the most efficient and safe manner possible.
To help you get started, here is a list of the various equipment used in KCS' rail shipping and the commodities most often used by the equipment.
Automotive cars are designed to carry all the items needed for the just-in-time automotive industry.
Auto racks come in various sizes to serve all the automotive industry’s needs.
|Car attribute||Auto rack bi-level||Auto rack tri-level||AutoMax|
|# Rack||2||3||2 or 3|
|Gross rail load||179K||195K||250K, 260K|
Boxcars are fully enclosed with doors. Equipped boxcars have special equipment that facilitates transportation of commodities ranging from Appliances to Paper and everything in between.
|Car attribute||50-ft. boxcar||60-ft. boxcar||60-ft. boxcar – high cube||86-ft. boxcar|
|Inside length||50 ft.||60 ft.||60 ft.||86 ft.|
|Inside height||11 ft.||11 ft.||13 ft.||13 ft.|
|Door type||Single plug, single sliding||Single plug, single sliding||Single plug/double sliding, double plug/single sliding||Single plug, double plug/single sliding|
|Door opening||10 ft.||10 ft., 12 ft.||10 ft., 12 ft., 16 ft.||20 ft.|
|Gross rail load||220K, 263K, 286K||263K, 286K||220K, 263K, 286K||220K, 263K|
|Primary commodity||Paper||Paper, plywood||Paper, appliances||Appliances|
Covered hoppers are permanently enclosed and handle bulk commodities. They are equipped with weather-tight openings for top loading and are commonly seen with Grain and Agricultural items.
|Car attribute||Standard covered hopper||High cube covered hopper|
|Cubic capacity (cft)||4650, 4750||5150, 5161, 5188, 5200|
|Gross rail load||263K, 286K||286K|
|Hatch type||Trough, circular||Trough, combination|
|Outlet gate type||Gravity||Gravity|
|Primary commodity||Grain, fertilizer, potash||Grain|
Flat cars feature flooring laid over the sills without sides and are geared to carrying oversized items.
|Car attribute||Centerbeam||Bulk head|
|Platform length||73 ft.||57-61 ft.|
|Gross rail load||63K||263K, 315K|
Gondolas are open-top cars with fixed sides, fixed or drop ends and solid bottoms. Equipped gondolas have special features designed to transport specific commodities ranging from Ag and Mineral to Metals and Scrap.
|Car attribute||Short mill gondola||Standard mill gondola||Long mill gondola|
|Interior length||42 ft., 48 ft.||52 ft.||66 ft.|
|Gross rail load||220K, 263K||220K, 263K, 286K||220K, 263K, 286K|
Intermodal equipment grants shippers the ability to transport freight by either rail, truck, or ship, all while utilizing the same shipping container. The below chart outlines the main type of intermodal equipment that is utilized across the KCS network.
|Rail-Controlled equipment||53' TMXU, EMP and UMAX containers||-|
|Shipper Owned Equipment||20' Containers and Isotanks, 28' Pup Trailers, 40' Trailers and Bulktanks, 53' Containers, Trailers and Raildecks||20', 40', and 45' containers.|
Tank cars are used exclusively for transportation of liquids, liquefied gases, compressed gases and solids liquefied prior to unloading. All tank cars are owned by the customers. The railroad does not provide tank cars.
As part of our commitment to the safety of our employees, customers and the communities we serve, KCSM requires that all tank cars must meet the safety standards as outlined by the Tank Car Safety standards (specifications) issued by the U.S. Department of Transportation and Transport Canada for tank cars transporting flammable liquids (Class 3 hazard classification) and TIH (material toxic by inhalation.
KCSM requires all cars to be “electronically” inspected to determine the car’s safety and fit for transporting the applicable commodity. This inspection will also serve to identify maintenance advisories and/or early warnings to keep cars in good mechanical and operational shape. As part of this electronic inspection process, KCSM requires all cars to be registered with KCSM prior to January 1, 2020. The easiest and most effective way to register both cars and the private car contact is through the UMLER system used throughout both Canada and the U.S.
|Car attribute||Tank cars|
|Insulated/exterior coils||Yes and no|
|Capacity (gallons)||20500, 23500, 21000, 30000|
|Gross rail load||263K, 286K|