Trucks carried 60.0 percent of the $95.6 billion of freight moved in March 2013 between the United States and its North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) partners, Canada and Mexico, followed by rail at 16.5 percent, vessels at 8.1 percent, pipelines at 7.0 percent and air at 3.7 percent, according to the Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS) of the U.S. Department of Transportation. The surface transportation modes of truck, rail and pipeline carried 83.5 percent of the total NAFTA freight flows.
BTS, a part of the Department’s Research and Innovative Technology Administration, reported that in March, for freight flows with Canada, trucks carried 55.1 percent of the $54.3 billion, followed by rail at 17.9 percent, pipelines at 11.6 percent, vessels at 4.6 percent and air at 4.4 percent. The surface transportation modes of truck, rail and pipeline carried 84.6 percent of the total U.S.-Canada freight flows.
For freight flows with Mexico in March, trucks carried 66.5 percent of the $41.2 billion, followed by rail at 14.8 percent, vessel at 12.7 percent, air at 2.7 percent and pipelines at 0.8 percent. The surface transportation modes of truck, rail and pipeline carried 82.0 percent of the total U.S.-Mexico freight flows. Beginning with January 2013, BTS monthly TransBorder press releases contain data for all modes of transportation. Press releases and the BTS website now define surface transportation modes as truck, rail and pipeline. Data on surface modes can be found in Figure 3 and in Tables 2, 3, 4 and 7.
The value of goods moving between the U.S. and its NAFTA partners by all modes of transportation decreased by 4.0 percent from March 2012 and rose 63.7 percent from March 2009. Goods moving by truck, pipeline, vessel, and air each declined, while rail freight increased from the same month last year. Data in the press release are not adjusted for inflation, except for the monthly totals illustrated in Figure 2 for comparison.
See BTS Transborder Data Release for summary tables, state rankings and additional data. See North American Transborder Freight Data on the BTS website for additional data for surface modes since 1995 and all modes since 2004.