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Effects of free time reduction on rail car utilization : forest products traffic Gabille, Jean-Pierre Rene

Abstract

This study examines one of the demurrage rules (free time allowance) and determines how changes in it would affect the utilization of cars carrying forest products. To achieve this objective, two substudies were carried out. The first was to determine the basic components of car activity found in a rail car load to load cycle. Knowledge of the percentage of time spent under customer control is of primary importance in determining to what extent a change in this time would affect the whale cycle. The second substudy was to analyse customer behaviour in order to predict how they would react to a change in free time. Combining both results, this study estimates to what extent free time reduction for loading and unloading rail cars would affect car utilization in the Forest Industry. The conclusions are, that only small savings could be achieved by reducing free time to induce customers to release their cars faster, and much larger savings could be achieved by improving other areas of car utilization such as yard and interchange operations. Those areas of improvements should be investigated in great detail by the railways.

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