Source: Association of American Railroads.
Average Speed of Class I Railroads, 1945-2004
With deregulation, rail performance, as measured by average speed, improved in the United States in the 1980s and early 1990s. However, the strong growth of rail traffic eventually imposed constraints on the system with a notable degradation of the average speed in the late 1990s and early 2000s. As a result, the average speed declined to the 30 kilometers per hour range.