Norfolk Southern Railway

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Norfolk Southern Railway
Norfolk Southern Railway system map.svg
NS system map; trackage rights in purple
Reporting mark NS
Locale Eastern United States
Dates of operation 1894 (1894)–Present (founded as the Southern Railway)
Track gauge 4 ft 8 12 in (1,435 mm) standard gauge
Length 21,500 miles (34,600 kilometres)
Headquarters Norfolk, Virginia
Westbound Norfolk Southern merchandise train on the Reading Line in Lyons, PA
NS building in Atlanta, Georgia

The Norfolk Southern Railway (reporting mark NS), (also known as Norfolk Southern Railway Company or simply Norfolk Southern) is a Class I railroad in the United States, owned by the Norfolk Southern Corporation. With headquarters in Norfolk, Virginia, the company operates over 22,000 route miles in 22 eastern states, the District of Columbia,[1] and has rights in Canada from Buffalo to Toronto and over the Albany to Montreal route.[2][dubious ][3] The most common commodity hauled on the railroad is coal from mines in Indiana, Kentucky, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Virginia, and West Virginia. The railroad also offers the most extensive intermodal network in eastern North America.

The Norfolk Southern Railway was founded in 1894 as the Southern Railway, making it the fourth oldest Class I railroad in North America (just behind Union Pacific Railroad, Canadian Pacific Railway and Kansas City Southern Railway). The railroad was renamed from "Southern Railway" to its current name "Norfolk Southern Railway" on December 31, 1990 to reflect its parent company, making the railroad the third business entity to use the "Norfolk Southern" name. Its holding company was the second business entity to use the "Norfolk Southern" name starting in 1982 and the holding company was named in honor of the original Norfolk Southern Railway that existed from 1942 to 1982.[citation needed]

Eight years before the renaming in 1982, the railroad and its rival the Norfolk and Western Railway joined together and created Norfolk Southern Corporation holding company and then both railroads were placed under control of their new holding company.

The railroad gained full control of the Norfolk and Western Railway in 1990 with the Norfolk and Western being transferred from the holding company to the renamed Norfolk Southern Railway. In 1997, the Norfolk Southern Railway absorbed the Norfolk and Western Railway, ending the existence of the Norfolk and Western Railway.

In 1999, the railroad grew substantially with the acquisition of over half of Conrail, acquiring 58% of Conrail. CSX Corporation's CSX Transportation acquired the remaining 42% of Conrail. Together Norfolk Southern Railway and the CSX Transportation have a duopoly over all east-west freight rail traffic east of the Mississippi River.

On November 17, 2015, Canadian Pacific Railway announced an offer to purchase all outstanding shares of Norfolk Southern Railway, at a price in excess of the US$26 Billion capitalization of the US based railway.[4] If completed, this merger of the second and fourth oldest Class I railroads in North America would form the largest single railway company on that continent, reaching from the Pacific coast to the Atlantic coast to the Gulf Coast.[4] On December 4, 2015, Norfolk Southern rejected Canadian Pacific's offer, but CP replied that it was "committed" to a merger with NS.[5]


Its time as the Southern Railway (1894–1990)

The railroad's previous logo as the Southern Railway
Southern's 4501 on display at the Tennessee Valley Railroad Museum.
File:Southern Railway train.jpg
Southern Railway 4610 working train GD01 in Dalton, Georgia, on January 19, 2006.

Norfolk Southern Railway was established in 1894 as the Southern Railway, making it the fourth oldest Class I railroad in North America after Union Pacific Railroad, Canadian Pacific Railway and Kansas City Southern Railway.

Before its establishment as the Southern Railway, the railroad has predecessor railroads in its heritage dating back to the early 19th century. The railroad's earliest predecessor line was the South Carolina Canal & Rail Road. Chartered in December 1827, the South Carolina Canal & Rail Road Company became the first in the nation to offer regularly scheduled passenger train service with the inaugural run of the Best Friend of Charleston on December 25, 1830.[6]

Another early predecessor to the railroad was the Richmond & Danville Railroad (R&D), was formed in 1847 and expanded into a large system after the American Civil War under Algernon S. Buford. The R&D ultimately fell on hard times and in 1894, it became a major portion of the then new Southern Railway (SOU). Financier J. P. Morgan selected veteran railroader Samuel Spencer as president. Profitable and innovative, Southern Railway became in 1953 the first major U.S. railroad to completely switch to diesel-electric locomotives from steam.

As the Southern Railway, the railroad purchased or absorbed various railroads over its 96-year period: Alabama Great Southern Railroad (AGS), Atlantic & Eastern Carolina Railway (A&EC), Central of Georgia Railway (CG), Cincinnati, New Orleans and Texas Pacific Railway (CNO&TP), Georgia and Florida Railroad (G&F), Georgia Northern Railway (GANO), Georgia Southern and Florida Railway (GS&F), Knoxville and Charleston Railroad, Louisiana Southern Railway (LS), New Orleans and North Eastern Railway (NO&NE), New Orleans Terminal Company (NOTCO), Tennessee, Alabama and Georgia Railway (TA&G), Carolina and Northwestern Railway (C&NW).

In 1982, the railroad teamed up with its competitor Norfolk and Western Railway with a merger. The Norfolk and Western dates back to the 19th century and absorbed various railroads in the second half of the 20th century such the Virginian Railway, the Wabash Railway, and the New York, Chicago and St. Louis Railroad (also known as the Nickel Plate Road).[7] The merger aimed to compete in the eastern United States with the CSX Corporation (its railroad network later transformed into the CSX Transportation) which was formed after the Interstate Commerce Commission's 1980 approval of the merger of the Chessie System and the Seaboard System.

The resulting merger consisted of both the Southern Railway and the Norfolk and Western Railway merging its business operations together to form a new railroad holding company called the Norfolk Southern Corporation. The "Norfolk Southern" name came from an earlier railroad called the Norfolk Southern Railway. The new holding company now becomes the second business entity to the "Norfolk Southern" name; the "Norfolk Southern" name would later on be used more frequently by the newly renamed Norfolk Southern Railway (formerly the Southern Railway). After the merger, both the Southern and the Norfolk and Western continued as separate railroads but now under one holding company. The created holding company placed its headquarters in Norfolk, Virginia

The company suffered a slight embarrassment when the marble headpiece at the building's entrance was unveiled, which read "Norfork Southern Railway". A new headpiece replaced the erroneous one several weeks later.[8]

Continuing as the Norfolk Southern Railway (1990–present)

NS 21M rolls through Easton, Pennsylvania on the Lehigh Line in 2006
Helpers on the rear of an intermodal train entering the Gallitzin Tunnel
Northbound Norfolk Southern autorack train on the Lurgan Branch

On December 31, 1990, the railroad, now owned and operated by the new Norfolk Southern Corporation, renamed itself from "Southern Railway" to "Norfolk Southern Railway" to reflect its parent company.

In the same year the railroad changed its name (1990), the renamed Norfolk Southern Railway (formerly Southern Railway) gained full control of the Norfolk and Western Railway with the Norfolk and Western being transferred from the holding company to the renamed Norfolk Southern Railway. This began Norfolk and Western's last seven years of operation.

In 1996, Norfolk Southern entered into a duopoly with the CSX Corporation to takeover the formerly government-owned Conrail. Consolidated Rail Corporation (Conrail) was a 11,000-mile (18,000 km) system formed in 1976 and replaced the Penn Central Railroad (1968–1976),[7] which itself was created with the merging three venerable railroad rivals, the Pennsylvania Railroad the New York Central Railroad and the New York, New Haven and Hartford Railroad, as well as some smaller competitors. Conrail replacing Penn Central was perhaps the most controversial conglomerate in corporate history. Conrail became profitable after the Staggers Act in 1980 largely deregulated the U.S. railroad industry.

The CSX Corporation bid to buy Conrail and have it be absorbed its railroad CSX Transportation. Norfolk Southern Railway's parent, the Norfolk Southern Corporation has been attempting to purchase Conrail ever since the holding company was created which was back in 1982. Fearing that CSX would come to dominate rail traffic in the eastern U.S., Norfolk Southern responded with a bid of its own to purchase Conrail. This started a takeover battle between Norfolk Southern and CSX

In 1997 during the Conrail battle with CSX which was handled by the parent Norfolk Southern Corporation, the Norfolk Southern Railway finally absorbed the Norfolk and Western Railway into their rail system, ending the existence of the Norfolk and Western Railway.

On June 23, 1997, NS and CSX filed a joint application with the Surface Transportation Board (STB) for authority to purchase, divide, and operate the assets of Conrail. On June 6, 1998, the STB approved the NS-CSX application, effective August 22, 1998. The process though wasn't completed until 1999.

In 1999 the Conrail takeover between Norfolk Southern and CSX was complete, the result was Norfolk Southern acquired over half of Conrail which was 58% while CSX got the remaining 42%. Norfolk Southern gained about 7,200 miles (11,600 km) of track, most of which was part of the former Pennsylvania Railroad. Norfolk Southern began operating its trains on its portion of the former Conrail network on June 1, 1999, closing out the 1990s merger era.

In 2015, the NS completed the acquisition of 282 miles of the Delaware & Hudson Railway Co.'s (D&H) line between Sunbury, Pa., and Schenectady, N.Y. for 214.5 million dollars from the Canadian Pacific The acquired lines connect with NS' network at Sunbury, Pa., and Binghamton, N.Y., and they provide NS single-line routes from Chicago and the southeastern United States to Albany, N.Y., and NS' intermodal terminals in Scranton, Pa., and Mechanicville, N.Y. NS also gained an enhanced connection to its joint venture subsidiary Pan Am Southern, which serves New England markets. Additionally, NS acquired D&H's car shop in Binghamton along with other facilities along the corridor.[9] Also in 2015, due to a slump in coal shipments, Norfolk Southern closed its former Virginian Railway lines and laid off workers at its Lambert's Point coal terminal.[10]

To date, both the Norfolk Southern Railway and CSX Transportation have a duopoly over all east-west freight rail traffic east of the Mississippi River.

After close of markets on November 17, 2015, Canadian Pacific Railway announced an offer to purchase all outstanding shares of Norfolk Southern Railway, at a price in excess of the US$26 Billion capitalization of the US based railway.[4] On December 4, 2015, Norfolk Southern rejected Canadian Pacific's offer, saying "After a comprehensive review, conducted in consultation with financial and legal advisors, the Norfolk Southern board concluded that the indication of interest is grossly inadequate, creates substantial regulatory risks and uncertainties that are highly unlikely to be overcome, and is not in the best interest of the company and its shareholders. The board believes that Canadian Pacific's indication of interest is opportunistically timed to take advantage of a Norfolk Southern market valuation that has been adversely affected by a challenging commodity price environment, does not fully reflect infrastructure investments Norfolk Southern has made, and does not incorporate the upside from further improvements anticipated to result from the initiatives that the company is implementing."

"Canadian Pacific is disappointed with Norfolk Southern Corp.'s rejection of its proposal to create an end-to-end North American rail network that would enhance competition and generate significant shareholder value," Canadian Pacific said in response. "CP takes exception to the claims, misdirection and mischaracterization of its offer and the benefits such a combination would provide to customers, shareholders, the industry and the public."[11]

Canadian Pacific sent Norfolk Southern a revised offer on December 8, 2015. NS immediately rejected it.[12] On December 16, 2015, Canadian Pacific made a third offer for Norfolk Southern, which it claimed was a "revised, enhanced offer." NS replied that it would consider the proposal, but that it was not substantially different from CP's previous bids.[13] On December 23, 2015, Norfolk Southern rejected Canadian Pacific's third offer. "The board of Norfolk Southern has unanimously determined that your latest revised proposal is grossly inadequate, creates substantial regulatory risks and uncertainties that are highly unlikely to be overcome, and is not in the best interest of the Company and its shareholders," NS said in its letter to CP.[14]

"It is apparent that neither the executive leadership at NS nor its board of directors are willing to sit down in an open and constructive dialogue about this transformational opportunity and that the interests of the NS board are not aligned with the best interests of NS shareholders," Canadian Pacific said in response, and noted that the railroad would review its "strategic alternatives." One of these alternatives may be a proxy fight for control of NS.[15]


File:Norfolk Southern Train Union NJ.jpg
A westbound Norfolk Southern intermodal train rolls through Union, NJ.

NS is a major transporter of domestic and export coal. The railroad's major sources of the mineral are located in: Pennsylvania's Cambria and Indiana counties, as well as the Monongahela Valley; West Virginia; and the Appalachia regions of Virginia, Kentucky, and Tennessee. In Pennsylvania, NS also receives coal through interchange with R.J. Corman Railroad/Pennsylvania Lines at Cresson, Pennsylvania, originating in the "Clearfield Cluster".

NS's export of West Virginia bituminous coal, begins transport on portions of the well-engineered former Virginian Railway and the former N&W double-tracked line in Eastern Virginia to its Lambert's Point coal pier on Hampton Roads at Norfolk. Coal transported by NS is thus exported to steel mills and power plants around the world. The company is also a major transporter of auto parts and completed vehicles. It operates intermodal container and TOFC (trailer on flat car) trains, some in conjunction with other railroads. NS was the first railway to employ roadrailers, which are highway truck trailers with interchangeable wheel sets.

According to NS's 2012 Annual Report to Investors, at the end of 2012, NS had more than 30,943 employees, 3,468 locomotives, and 79,082 freight cars.

At the end of 2012, the transport of coal, coke, and iron ore made up 26% of the total operating revenue of NS, general merchandise (automotive, chemicals, metals, construction materials, agriculture commodities, consumer products, paper, clay, and forest products) made up 54%, and intermodal made up 20% of the total.

Company officers

CEO and President positions represent both the railroad and the holding company. CEO's and Presidents of Norfolk Southern have included:

  • Robert B. Claytor, CEO: 1982–1987
  • Arnold B. McKinnon, CEO and President: 1987–1992
  • David R. Goode:
    • CEO: 1992–2005
    • President: 1991–2004
  • Charles "Wick" Moorman:
    • CEO: 2005–2015
    • President: 2004–2013
  • James A. Squires:[16]
    • CEO: June 2015–present
    • President: June 1, 2013–present

Current trackage

Operating divisions

  • Lake
  • Dearborn-Detroit Metropolitan Area
  • Illinois
  • Alabama
  • Georgia
  • Piedmont
  • Pittsburgh
  • Harrisburg
  • Central
  • Virginia
  • Pocahontas

Pittsburgh Line

Eastbound intermodal train on the Pittsburgh Line in Newport
Two NS trains heading east along the Pittsburgh Line

The Pittsburgh Line is NS's principal east–west line from the Northeast to the Midwest. Running from Harrisburg, Pennsylvania to Conway, Pennsylvania, it once was the core of the Pennsylvania Railroad's (PRR) main line. An average day sees 60 to 110 trains of all types. The line is home to the famous Horseshoe Curve.

Beginning at Altoona in Altoona, Pennsylvania, and ending at Conpit Junction in West Wheatfield Township, Pennsylvania, trains must ascend and control their speed down the faces of the Allegheny Ridge, some of the steepest slopes in the Allegheny Range. It is a helper locomotive district. Most common on helper assignments are pairs of new SD40Es (former EMD SD50 units rebuilt at NS's Juniata Shops in Altoona). On heavier unit coal trains, it is not uncommon to see two helper sets put together to create what local railfans call four-bangers. Some trains weigh more than 18,000 tons. For eastbound traffic, road crews often call for a "helper-ahead" when they are short on time.

Some lesser hills also exist west of Altoona, sometimes warranting westbound helpers to continue to Pittsburgh. For this purpose, a partial bypass of the Pittsburgh Line exists between Johnstown and Pittsburgh. Known as the Conemaugh Line, it runs from Conpit Junction to Federal Street on the North Side of Pittsburgh via a flat, though longer, route along the Conemaugh and Allegheny Rivers, bypassing several steep grades west of the Alleghenies as well as the Pittsburgh passenger station. The Conemaugh Line is used mostly by heavier freights.

Chicago Corridor

At about 150 miles, this is the most direct route for NS trains between Chicago and Fort Wayne, Indiana. It has 16 passing sidings and several stretches of double track.

Chicago Bypass

Meridian Speedway

Pan Am Southern/Patriot Corridor

Norfolk Southern ES40DC 7613 on Pan Am Southern in Zoar, MA

On May 15, 2008, NS announced that it would join with the ailing Pan Am Railways to create the "Patriot Corridor", an improved rail route between Albany, New York, and the greater Boston, Massachusetts, area.[17][18][19] On March 12, 2009, STB approved the deal.[20] Each of the two companies now owns 50% of a new company known as Pan Am Southern (PAS). PAR's trackage between Ayer, Massachusetts, and Mechanicville, New York, was transferred to PAS, and continues to be operated and maintained by PAR's Springfield Terminal Railway Company subsidiary. NS transferred to PAS cash and property valued at $140 million.

Planned improvements to the route include upgrades to tracks and signals and new automotive and intermodal terminals.

Yards and facilities

Norfolk Southern yard in Croxton, New Jersey, on the outskirts of New York City

Largely an eastern U.S. railway, NS directly owns and operates 21,300 miles (34,300 kilometres) of track in 22 states. It operates three primary hubs in its system: Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, Chicago, and Atlanta and maintains facilities across the Eastern US to facilitate operations, including rail classification yards, intermodal yards, and locomotive shops

NS has rights to operate its trains with its own crews on competing railroads' tracks. These trackage rights permit NS to operate as far west as Dallas, Texas, as far north as Waterville, Maine, and as far south as Miami, Florida. NS locomotives also occasionally operate on competitors' tracks throughout the U.S. and Canada due to the practice of locomotive leasing and sharing undertaken by the Class I railroads. Not including second, third, and fourth main line trackage, yards, and sidings, NS directly operates some 21,500 miles (34,600 kilometres) of track. In addition NS has direct control over approximately 38,000 miles (61,000 kilometres).

General Freight Classification Yards

Enola Yard, Pennsylvania

Intermodal classification yards

  • Atlanta, GA - Inman
  • Austell, GA (Whitaker)
  • Ayer, MA
  • Baltimore, MD
  • Bethlehem, PA
  • Buffalo, NY
  • Charlotte, NC
  • Chesapeake, VA – Portlock
  • Chicago, IL – 47th Street
  • Chicago, IL – 63rd Street
  • Chicago, IL – Calumet
  • Chicago, IL – Landers
  • Cincinnati, OH – Gest Street
  • Collierville, TN – Rossville (Memphis)
  • Columbus, OH
  • Dallas, TX – KCS
  • Decatur, IL
  • Detroit, MI – Delray
  • Detroit, MI – Livernois
  • Elizabeth, NJ – Elizabeth Marine Terminal
  • Elizabeth, NJ – E-Rail
  • Front Royal, VA
  • Garden City, GA – Garden City Marine Terminal (Savannah)
  • Georgetown, KY
  • Greencastle, PA – Franklin County Regional Intermodal Facility
  • Greensboro, NC
  • Greer, SC – South Carolina Inland Port
  • Harrisburg, PA – Harrisburg Intermodal Yard
  • Harrisburg, PA – Rutherford Intermodal Yard
  • Huntsville, AL
  • Jacksonville, FL
  • Jersey City, NJ (Croxton)
  • Kansas City, MO
  • Langhorne, PA (Morrisville)
  • Louisville, KY – Appliance Park
  • Louisville, KY – Buechel
  • Maple Heights, OH (Cleveland)
  • McCalla, AL (Birmingham)
  • Mechanicville, NY (Albany)
  • Memphis, TN – Forrest Yard
  • New Orleans, LA
  • Norfolk, VA – Norfolk International Terminals
  • North Charleston, SC (Charleston)
  • Portsmouth, VA – APM Terminal
  • Rossville, TN - Rossville Intermodal Facility
  • Savannah, GA – Port Wentworth
  • Sharonville, OH (Cincinnati)
  • St. Louis, MO
  • Taylor, PA
  • Titusville, FL
  • Toledo, OH
  • Wall, PA (Pittsburgh)


Locomotive shops

Juniata Shops at Altoona Works
  • Altoona, PA – Altoona Works
  • Bellevue, OH
  • Binghamton, NY - former D&H Yard
  • Chattanooga, TN
  • Conway, PA – Conway Yard
  • Elkhart, IN
  • Harrisburg, PA – Enola Yard
  • Roanoke, VA – Shaffer's Crossing Locomotive Shop
  • Roanoke, VA – Roanoke Locomotive Shop

NS also shares interest with CSX in the Oak Island Yard, managed by Conrail Shared Assets Operations in Newark, New Jersey.

Environmental record

Air quality and fuel efficiency

In early spring of 2008, the state program manager for air quality planning in Georgia, Jimmy Johnston, had been talking to NS about voluntary upgrades to reduce the company's environmental impact. NS is upgrading 3,800 of its locomotives with new technology that is 73 percent more efficient than previous models. The new technology being put into the locomotives is making the ride more fuel efficient and reducing idle time.[22][full citation needed]

NS has also introduced an experimental battery-electric switcher locomotive, NS 999. This prototype locomotive was developed by Norfolk Southern, in collaboration with the United States Department of Energy, the Federal Railroad Administration and the Pennsylvania State University.[23]


On January 6, 2005, a NS derailment resulted in a large amount of chlorine and diesel fuel being released into nearby waterways in Graniteville, South Carolina. In addition, a toxic cloud covered the city resulting in the town being evacuated. Federal common carrier laws prevent railroads from refusing to transport chlorine and similar Toxic Inhalation Hazard (TIH) commodities. Local wildlife was killed, many of the local crops and vegetation were contaminated or killed, nine human deaths were reported, and thousands were injured.[24] The company is being taken to court and being fined for violating the Clean Water Act and the Federal Superfund law. NS has spent a total of $26 million for the cleanup.[25]

Locomotive and rolling stock

Paint and colors

NS's locomotives are often called "catfish" by railfans, as the stripes are said to look like catfish whiskers. EMD GP59 no. 4610 was painted in predecessor Southern colors of green and white with gold trim and was a favorite of railfans. The work was done at the DeButts Yard in Chattanooga, Tennessee during the summer of 1994 and the locomotive received a repaint in the summer of 2004. The locomotive was repainted standard NS black and white in February 2012.

The current paint scheme for NS locomotives is black and white, with yellow grab irons and step-edge highlights. Locomotives feature a rearing horse decal enclosed in the "catfish" stripes on both the nose and rear, which is consistent with marketing campaigns where NS has billed itself as "The Thoroughbred of Transportation".

Norfolk Southern painted 20 new-order ES44ACs and SD70ACes in commemorative heritage paint schemes as part of NS's 30th anniversary celebration in 2012 (more info below in the "Heritage Schemes" section).


Historically, NS has only purchased DC traction diesel locomotives, and was one of the last North American AC-traction hold-outs aside from Canadian National Railway. In September 2008, however, NS placed its first order for new AC traction locomotives: 24 GE ES44ACs, numbered 8000-8023, for use as pushers on long-haul coal trains. In the years since, NS has purchased several more ES44ACs as well as over 150 EMD SD70ACes.

In an effort to avoid having to order new, EPA Tier 4-emissions compliant locomotives in 2015, NS has taken delivery of several older EMD locomotives from various US Class I railroads, including 9 ex-BNSF "tri-clops" SD60M's, 6 ex-ATSF (BNSF) SD75M's, the remaining 12 ex-Conrail SD80MAC's owned by CSX, and a majority of Union Pacific's SD9043MAC's.

Norfolk Southern is the only railroad ever to own SD80MAC's and SD90MAC's simultaneously.

Heritage fleet

ES44AC 8100 in Nickel Plate Road colors

In the first half of 2012, Norfolk Southern painted 10 EMD SD70ACe's and 10 GE ES44AC's as special heritage units, each bearing the paint schemes and markings of the various predecessor railroads of Norfolk Southern and Conrail. On July 1–3, 2012, all 20 units gathered together at the North Carolina Transportation Museum at Spencer, North Carolina, as the highlight of NS's 30th-anniversary celebration. The locomotives have since traveled throughout the United States on various Class I railroads as run-through pool power, attracting much attention from railfans.[26][27][28][29]

The Heritage Units include:

Steam excursion programs

After the 1982 merger, NS President Robert Claytor retained the Southern Railway's popular steam excursion program begun in the 1960s by his brother, SR president W. Graham Claytor. NS initially attempted to use former Chesapeake and Ohio 2716, which had been modified for the SR's program, but the locomotive developed mechanical problems, and the railway brought Norfolk & Western 611 and Norfolk & Western 1218 into the program. The railroad was forced to end the program in late 1994 after two accidents in the preceding decade and rising insurance and maintenance costs to keep it going, but restarted it in 2010 in conjunction with the Tennessee Valley Railroad Museum. The program currently operates Southern Railway 630, Nickel Plate 765, Southern Railway 4501, and Norfolk & Western 611.

Rolling stock

2013 NS Rolling Stock
Type Owned Leased Total Total Capacity (Tons)
Gondola 33,820 3,839 37,659 4,098,830
Hopper 15,234 521 15,755 1,737,636
Box 12,356 1,470 13,826 1,151,821
Covered hopper 10,558 158 10,716 1,182,466
Flat 2,506 1,133 3,639 335,196
Other 4,608 87 4,695 225,067
Total 79,082 7,208 86,290 8,731,016



EMP container

EMP, a domestic interline intermodal freight transport partnership, is owned by Norfolk Southern, Union Pacific, and agent-owned partners Canadian National Railway, Canadian Pacific Railway, I&M Rail Link, Iowa Interstate Railroad, Wisconsin Central Ltd., and Kansas City Southern Railway. The company provides shipping and logistics of containers. It has a fleet of over 35,000 domestic 53-foot containers and chassis. The service traverses major cities throughout North America.[31][32][33]

Reporting marks

Railroads use initials as reporting marks, a universal system intended to help keep track of rolling stock and financial transactions between railroads. Although it has been widely known as simply "Norfolk Southern" since 1982, the corporate structure and reporting marks are more complicated. In 1990, Southern Railway Company was renamed Norfolk Southern Railway Co. Its Norfolk and Western Railway company was merged into the Norfolk Southern Railway in 1997. In 1999, when most of Conrail's former PRR trackage was sold to the Norfolk Southern Railway, the Pennsylvania Railway Lines was created and PRR reporting marks used on the former Conrail motive power and rolling stock.

Television commercials

The television commercials represent both the railroad and the holding company. On September 3, 2007, NS launched new television ads featuring a family of gas cans cross country trekking to meet a NS train; it is a message on NS' role to reduced congestion on highways called "Lonely Gallon". It also features the song "You Don't Need Me" performed by Ravi Krishnaswami of New York and Steve Kolander of Atlanta. The song was created specially for NS. It was filmed in the Shenandoah Valley in Virginia.[34] In May 2013, NS rocked National Train Day by premiering a new ad series, using music adapted from ABC's "Conjunction Junction" School House Rock program.[35][36] The video shows an overhead view of Inman Rail Yard in Atlanta. NS's commercials can often be seen on channels such as CNN several times throughout the day.

Awards and recognition

Awards and recognition represent both both the railroad and the holding company. From 1989 to 2012, NS won the Gold (first-place) E.H. Harriman Award in Group A (line-haul railroads whose employees worked 15 million employee-hours or more) every single year.[37] The award, which recognized the railroads with the lowest casualty rates per 200,000 employee-hours, was discontinued in 2012.[38]

In January 2011, NS Chairman and CEO Wick Moorman was named Railroader of the Year by Railway Age magazine.[39]

See also

Improvement projects

Cultural references

Trade unions


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  22. "New limits on trains could help Macon's air" April 9, 2008. Accessed May 6, 2008.
  23. "Batteries ARE included: Norfolk Southern unveils experimental electric locomotive | Norfolk Southern – The Thoroughbred of Transportation | Creating green jobs shipping freight by rail". 2009-09-28. Retrieved 2012-05-15.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  24. "Railroad accused of water pollution in SC wreck". The Times and Democrat. Associated Press. April 24, 2008. Retrieved 2013-02-07.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
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  26. "Norfolk Southern to debut heritage fleet - TRAINS Magazine". 2012-03-26. Retrieved 2012-05-15.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  27. "Norfolk Southern celebrates colorful heritage with historic paint schemes | Norfolk Southern – The Thoroughbred of Transportation | Creating green jobs shipping freight by rail". 2012-03-01. Retrieved 2012-05-15.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  28. "NS Diesel Locomotive Roster - GE ES44AC (ES-44AC) Nos. 8000-8115". 2012-05-04. Retrieved 2012-05-15.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
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  30. "2013 Form 10-K". Norfolk Southern Corp. Retrieved 5 January 2014.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  34. "Norfolk Southern – The Thoroughbred of Transportation | Creating green jobs shipping freight by rail". Retrieved 2012-05-15.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  35. "Norfolk Southern - What's Your Function?". Retrieved 2013-06-08.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  36. Norfolk Southern to rock National Train Day Railroad rolls out trains, family fun, and a new twist on an old classic | Norfolk Southern – The Thoroughbred of Transportation | Creating green jobs shipping freight by rail. (2013-05-09). Retrieved on 2013-07-23.
  37. "Media Contacts". Norfolk Southern.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  38. "Rail News - AAR names winners of E.H. Harriman, Harold F. Hammond safety awards. For Railroad Career Professionals". Progressive Railroading.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  39. Vantuono, William C., "Wick Moorman Norfolk Southern produces champion", Railway Age, January 2011

General references

  • "System map". Norfolk Southern Railway. Retrieved 2008-07-28.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  • "System Map 2013 PDF" (PDF). Norfolk Southern Railway. Retrieved 2015-11-16.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>

External links