Rail freight bounces back to pre-COVID levels despite performance drop

The amount of freight moved across Britain has returned to pre-pandemic levels, reports the Office of Rail and Road (ORR).

Released on September 23, the regulator’s latest Freight Rail Usage and Performance statistics indicate that some 4.33 billion net tonne-kilometres of rail freight was moved in April-June 2021(Q1 2021-22).

This is an increase of 36.5% on the corresponding quarter last year (Q1 2020-21) and an increase of 1.3% compared with two years ago (Q1 2019-20).

In the latest figures, rail freight had a punctuality figure in excess of 90%, despite a drop in performance compared with the same quarters in 2019-20 and 2020-21.

Operators experienced 8.27 minutes of delay per 100 train kilometres, which is 52.8% higher than 12 months ago.

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