Friday, September 23, 2011

Clewiston sugar cane railway, Florida

This operation is owned by the US Sugar Corporation - railway info on its website:-

U.S. Sugar owns and operates the largest private agricultural short line railroad in the country and is the only sugar company in the continental United States that transports all its cane by railroad to its sugar factory. Rail transportation of U.S. Sugar’s cane crop is one of the aspects of production that makes Company operations highly cost efficient since rail transport requires significantly less fuel than truck transport and reduces highway traffic.
Internal Railraod
  • The Company owns 120 miles of railroad that connects agricultural operations to the factory and refining operations.
  • The rail line connects with the Florida East Coast and the South Central Florida Express railroads, which in turn connect to CSX.
  • The U.S. Sugar operates approximately 1,000 railroad cane cars and 14 locomotives.
  • As sugar cane is harvested it is collected at rail loading stations. Each specially designed cane car holds up to 40 tons of sugar cane – the equivalent of an average acre.
  • As many as 1,300 railroad cars run each day, the equivalent of 2,600 semi-tractor loads.
  • The system operates 24 hours a day for just-in-time processing.
  • Rail transportation of sugar cane and other farm products is highly efficient and cost effective. In 1994, U.S. Sugar purchased the independent short line railroad, South Central Florida Express, with 156 miles of track, 14 locomotives and 950 railcars.

    South Central Florida Express
  • Since 1994, traffic increased from 41,000 carloads to more than 73,000 in 2003. In 2010, a total of 116,668 carloads were transported.
  • Two spurs connect Lake Okeechobee’s agricultural communities and businesses with the mainline railroads to the north and south.
  • Hauls sugar cane and products, fertilizer and farm equipment as well as products for lumber, paper and citrus industries.
  • Named “1999 Short Line Railroad of the Year” by Railway Age magazine.
  • Broad customer base includes local and national companies.

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