Mode Fuel Consumption Infrastructure Capacity Costs Safety
Railroad 455 ton-miles per gallon 216 million tons per mainline per year 2.7 cents per ton-mile 0.61 fatalities per billion ton-miles; 12.4 incidents per billion ton-miles
Trucking 105 ton-miles per gallon 37.8 million tons per lane per year 5.0 cents per ton-mile 1.45 fatalities per billion ton-miles; 36.4 incidents per billion ton-miles
Source: Brown, T.A and A.B. Hatch (2002) The Value of Rail Intermodal to the US Economy, http://www.aar.org/pubcommon/documents/govt/brown.pdf
Comparison of the Relative Efficiencies of Rail and Trucking
Rail transportation has obviously several key advantages over trucking, particularly in terms of energy efficiency (4 times), capacity (6 times) and costs (2 times).