11.7 billion tons shipped domestically in 2012
American manufacturers and related industries shipped almost 11.7 billion tons of goods valued at more than $13.6 trillion in 2012, according to preliminary numbers from the 2012 Commodity Flow Survey released Tuesday by the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Bureau of Transportation Statistics and the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Census Bureau.
Final CFS data are scheduled to be released in December 2014.
BTS reported that in 2012, trucks moved manufactured goods, refined petroleum products, chemicals and raw materials originating with shippers in the United States amounting to about 8 billion tons in shipments valued at $10 trillion. These shipments represent more than 70 percent of both the value and the weight of freight for 2012. The CFS covers about three-fourths of all freight movements, excluding imports, shipments from farms and crude oil production. Among other findings:
- Multiple mode shipments using more than one type of transportation, including parcel shipments, were second to trucking in shipment value, at $1.8 trillion. Of all multiple-mode shipments, parcel represented the most by value ($1.6 trillion or 11.6 percent of total freight value) while domestic intermodal carried the most weight (224 million tons or 1.9 percent of total freight weight).
- Rail was the second most-used mode by weight, carrying 1.8 billion tons of freight for a 16-percent share by weight, but only 3 percent of goods by value.
- Based on ton-miles, rail accounted for 44.5 percent, and trucking accounted for 38.1 percent of freight transported.
- Shipments totaling 6.4 billion tons, more than half of the total weight of all shipments, moved less than 50 miles, while shipments traveling less than 250 miles represented more than 60 percent of value.
- Shipments of less than 50 pounds traveled an average of 695 miles, while shipments of 50 pounds to 99 pounds traveled an average of 361 miles.
- CFS shows that the manufacturing industry shipped 4.3 billion tons of commodities valued at $5.7 trillion and generated 1.3 trillion ton-miles in 2012, representing the largest contribution of any industry sector. The two commodities generating the most value in the survey were gasoline and related fuels, and mixed freight shipments. The commodity category with the most tonnage was gravel and crushed stone.
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