BNSF Railway Company (BNSF) has selected Kiamichi Railroad Company as its 2018 ‘Shortline of the Year’ during its annual Shortline Conference.
Kiamichi is a Class 3 shortline railroad serving Arkansas, Texas, and Oklahoma and interchanging with BNSF in Madill, Okla.
Kiamichi, a subsidiary of Genesee & Wyoming, was recognized for its commitment to safety, service, growth, investment and velocity.
“Kiamichi’s employee safety record, including an impressive injury-free streak, is a testament to their focus on safe rail operations,” said Merril Lieb, assistant vice president, BNSF Shortline Development.
Lieb also noted that the railroad has made significant investments in its infrastructure, leading to a 300 percent growth in its carload business with BNSF.
Since 2012, Kiamichi has improved much of its 265-mile line to handle 286,000-lb. loads of traffic, including upgrades to 150 miles of track and investments of more than $35 million.
With BNSF, officials said Kiamichi worked to achieve market share in aggregates, fluff pulp and coal.
“We are a customer-focused railroad and have worked diligently to help our existing customers grow while bringing more businesses to our rail line,” said Ryan Englebright, Kiamichi’s general manager. “We have seen growth in transload facilities and attracted a new steel mill.”
BNSF also recognized Richmond Pacific Railroad Corporation (RPRC) for its focus on safety and customer service.
Based in Richmond, Calif., RPRC has a seven-year injury-free safety record, has upgraded rail, and increased capacity to facilitate additional business.
The entire RPRC locomotive fleet has also been upgraded with modern power, which increases fuel efficiency and decreases their environmental footprint.