Traditionally, large shippers would build factories and warehouses near rail lines and have a section of track on their property called a siding where goods are loaded onto or unloaded from rail cars. Most of these factories, produced goods in bulk. Rail freight was only economical for shipping bulk (multiple cars) or commodities loaded in bulk like coal. It simply wasn’t economical to divert a full train to just load a few rail wagons.
With the increase use of intermodal (meaning more than one mode of transportation), the small to medium sized shipper can now ship via rail. Major rail hubs have cargo freight trains loaded and unloaded in huge rail yards like a container port. Rapid Express in partnership with CSX and other rail operators arranges the full move. We arrange for an empty container to be picked up from the rail yard. The empty container comes on truck to the shipper’s dock to be loaded. The full container is then returned to the rail yard and loaded on a train. We do the same procedure at the delivery point.