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Freight Rail


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The economic vitality of Washington state requires a strong rail system capable of providing its businesses, ports and farms with competitive access to North American and international markets.

There are over 3,000 miles of railroad lines in Washington State, providing mobility for freight and passengers moving into, out of, within, and through the state.

Two Class I railroads, the BNSF Railway and the Union Pacific Railroad, as well as 24 short-line railroads operate through communities in Washington State.

The Palouse River and Coulee City (PCC) rail system, owned and operated by WSDOT, is the longest short-line freight rail system in Washington State. WSDOT contracts with private railroads to operate each of the branches.

Railroads in Washington play a major role in the movement of a broad range of products and commodities, ranging from consumer electronics to heavy bulk goods, for local production and consumption, as well as for consumer markets in the U.S. and internationally.

What's New:

The Washington State Short Line Rail Inventory and Needs Assessment was completed in June 2015.

The Palouse River and Coulee City Rail System Strategic Plan was completed in May 2015.

2013 Washington State Rail Plan

I would like to learn more about:
The PCC rail system
WSDOT grant and loan programs
The Washington Grain Train
The Produce Rail Car Pool

Train safety
Rail terminology