A new study suggests that getting freight onto trains and off of trucks would have a significant impact on traffic.
"Moving freight by rail has the potential to save Americans hundreds of dollars and time in the car, according to the Congestion Relief Index, a study of traffic congestion in 82 major urban areas.
"With gas prices at an all-time high, Americans can't afford to waste money and time sitting in traffic. Because one intermodal train can take nearly 300 trucks off our highways, shifting freight from trucks to trains reduces competition between commuters, drivers and freight traffic for space on the road," said Wendell Cox, author of the study and principal of Demographia, a market research and urban policy consultancy.
The study claims that if 25% of the volume moved by trucks was moved to rail transport by the year 2026, each American commuter could save, on average, $985 -- and 41 hours of time in their car -- a year. The survey also estimates that each year, a commuter could save 79 gallons of fuel and reduce air pollution by 920,000 tons."