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Glossary Of Terms & Abbreviations

A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I | J | K | L | M | N | O | P | Q | R | S | T | U | V | W | X | Y | Z

 A Back to top

AAR : An abbreviation for - 1) Against All Risks [an insurance clause], or 2) Association of American Railroads [see below].

Abatement : A discount allowed for damage or overcharge in the payment of a bill.

Absorption : One carrier assumes the charges of another without any increase in charges to the shipper.

Acceptance : 1) A time draft (or bill of exchange) that the drawee (payer) has accepted and is unconditionally obligated to pay at maturity; 2) Broadly speaking, any agreement to purchase goods under specified terms.

Access Fee : Typically, the fee paid by a commuter or intercity passenger rail operator to the owner of a railroad line (usually a freight railroad) for the right to operate over the line. Usually calculated on a train-mile or car-mile basis.

Accessorial Charges : Charges that are applied to the base tariff rate or base contract rate, e.g., bunkers, container, currency, destination / delivery.

Acquiescence : When a bill of lading is accepted or signed by a shipper or shipper's agent without protest, the shipper is said to acquiesce to the terms, giving a silent form of consent.

Acquittance : A written receipt in full, in discharge from all claims.

Act of God : An act beyond human control, such as lightning, flood, or earthquake.

Act of Man : The deliberate destruction of cargo, such as vandalism, arson, theft, or war. Also, the deliberate sacrifice of some cargo to protect the remaining cargo aboard a train, a vessel, or in a storage facility.

Actual Receiver : Person who receives freight at the final destination, generally the party accepting or using the freight.

Actual Shipper : Person whose goods are being shipped, generally the manufacturer or producer.

Ad Valorem : A term from Latin meaning - "According To Value" An ad valorem tax, or tariff, is one that is based on the item's value.

Administrative Law Judge : A representative of a government commission or agency vested with power to administer oaths, examine witnesses, take testimony, and conduct hearings of cases submitted to, or initiated by, that agency. Also called Hearing Examiner.

Admiralty (Adm.) : Refers to marine matters such as an Admiralty Court.

Advanced Charge : Transportation charge advanced by one carrier to another to be collected by the later carrier from the consignor or consignee.

Adventure : Shipment of goods on shipper's own account. A bill of adventure is a document signed by the master of the ship that carries goods at owner' risk.

Advice of Shipment : A notice sent to a local or foreign buyer advising that shipment has gone forward and containing details of packing, routing, etc. A copy of the invoice is often enclosed and, if desired, a copy of the bill of lading.

Affiliate : A company effectively controlled by another, or associated with others, under a common ownership or control.

Agency Tariff : A tariff published by an agent on behalf of several carriers.

Agent : A person authorized to transact business for and in the name of another person or company. Types of agents include : Brokers, Commission Merchants, Resident Buyers, Sales Agents, and Manufacturer's Representatives.

Aggregate Shipment : Numerous shipments from different shippers to one consignee that are consolidated and treated as a single consignment.

Agreed Valuation : The value of a shipment agreed upon in order to secure a specific freight rate.

Agreed Weight : The weight prescribed by agreement between carrier and shipper for goods shipped in certain packages or in a certain number.

Air Waybill : The forwarding agreement or carrying agreement between shipper and air carrier and is issued only in nonnegotiable form.

All In : The total price to move cargo from origin to destination, inclusive of all charges.

Alternative Rates : Privilege to use the rate producing the lowest charge.

Ambient Temperature : The temperature of a surrounding body. The ambient temperature of a container is the atmospheric temperature to which it is exposed.

American Bureau of Shipping : U.S. classification society which certifies seagoing vessels for compliance to standardized rules regarding construction and maintenance.

American Public Transit Association (APTA) : Trade association representing the transit industry in the United States and Canada.

Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) : The transportation related elements of ADA define the responsibilities of and requirements for transportation providers to make transportation accessible to individuals with disabilities. The United States Department of Transportation published the Final Rule on Transportation for Individuals with Disabilities on September 6, 1991 [49CFR27, 49CFR37, and 49CFR38]. The Final Rule should be consulted for complete definitions.

Any Quantity (A.Q.) : Usually refers to a rating that applies to an article regardless of size or quantity.

Apparent Good Order : When freight appears to be free of damage so far as a general survey can determine.

Arbitrary : A stated amount over a fixed rate to one point to make a rate to another point.

Arrival Notice : A notification by carrier of ship's arrival to the consignee, the Notify Party, and - when applicable - the Also Notify Party. These parties in interest are listed in blocks 3, 4 and 10, respectively, of the Bill of Lading.

Assignment : A term commonly used in connection with a bill of lading. It involves the transfer of rights, title and interest in order to assign goods by endorsing the bill of lading.

Association of American Railroads (AAR) : The coordinating and research agency of the American railroad industry. It is a private organization, not a government agency, to which railroads belong, not unlike the way local businesses belong to a chamber of commerce.

A.T.A. : An abbreviation for - American Trucking Association.

Average Fleet Age : The cumulative years active revenue vehicles are in service divided by the sum of all active revenue vehicles.

Average Weekday : A representative weekday in the operation of the transit system, computed as the mathematical average of several typical weekdays (usually in the Spring and Fall).

Avoirdupois Pound : A unit of measure equal to 0.4535924277 kilograms.

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B/L : An abbreviation for - Bill of Lading.

Bankrupt : Legally declared insolvent - unable to pay one's debts. One's remaining assets are taken over by judicial process, and then divided among one's creditors.

Barrel (BBL) : A unit of measure equal to 42 gallons of liquid at 60 degrees Fahrenheit.

Base Rate : A tariff term referring to a rate less accessorial charges, or simply the base tariff rate.

Beneficial Owner : Person who owns or has title to the freight during transportation.

Beneficiary : 1) Entity to whom money is payable; 2) The entity for whom a letter of credit is issued; 3) The seller and the drawer of a draft.

Beyond : Used with reference to charges assessed for cargo movement past a line-haul terminating point.

Bilateral : A contract term meaning both parties agree to provide something for the other.

Bill of Exchange : In the United States, commonly known as a draft. However, bill of exchange is the correct term.

Bill of Lading (B/L) : Abbreviated B/L, it is : 1) A document that establishes the terms of a contract between a shipper and a transportation company. It serves as a document of title, a contract of carriage and a receipt for goods; 2) Shipping document or shipping instructions sent from a shipper that initiates the movement of a vehicle.

Types of Bills of Lading
Amended B/L B/L requiring updates that do not change financial status; this is slightly different from corrected B/L.
B/L Terms & conditions The fine print on back of B/L; defines what the carrier can and cannot do, including the carrier's liabilities and contractual agreements.
B/L's Status Represents whether the bill of lading has been input, rated, reconciled, printed, or released to the customer.
Blind Shipment A B/L wherein the paying customer has contracted with the carrier that shipper or consignee information is not given.
B/L's Type Refers to the type of B/L being issued. Some examples are: a Memo (ME), Original (OBL), Non-negotiable, Corrected (CBL) or Amended (AM) B/L.
Canceled B/L B/L status; used to cancel a processed B/L; usually per shipper's request; different from voided B/L.
Clean B/L A B/L which bears no superimposed clause or notation which declares a defective condition of the goods and/or the packaging.
Combined B/L B/L that covers cargo moving over various transports.
Consolidated B/L B/L combined or consolidated from two or more B/L's.
Corrected B/L B/L requiring any update which results in money, or other financially related changes.
Domestic B/L Non-negotiable B/L primarily containing routing details; usually used by truckers and freight forwarders.
Duplicate B/L Another original Bill of Lading set if first set is lost. also known as reissued B/L.
Express B/L Non-negotiable B/L where there are no hard copies of originals printed.
Freight B/L A contract of carriage between a shipper and forwarder (who is usually a NVOCC); a non-negotiable document.
Government B/L (GBL) A document issued by the U.S. government.
Hitchment B/L B/L covering parts of a shipment which are loaded at more than one location. Hitchment B/L usually consists of two parts, hitchment and hitchment memo. The hitchment portion usually covers the majority of a divided shipment and carries the entire revenue.
House B/L B/L issued by a freight forwarder or consolidator covering a single shipment containing the names, addresses and specific description of the goods shipped.
Intermodal B/L B/L covering cargo moving via multimodal means. Also known as Combined Transport B/L, or Multimodal B/L.
Long Form B/L B/L form with Terms & Conditions written on the back.
Memo B/L Unfreighted B/L with no charges listed.
Military B/L B/L issued by the U.S. military; also known as GBL, or Form DD1252.
B/L Numbers U.S. Customs' standardized B/L format to facilitate electronic communications.
Negotiable B/L Consignment/banking term. B/L names are legal and by endorsement the shipper can transfer the title of the goods to the bank representing the buyer or directly to the buyer of the goods.
Non-Negotiable B/L See Straight Consignment. Sometimes means a file copy of a B/L.
Onboard B/L B/L validated at the time of loading to transport. Onboard Air, Boxcar, Container, Rail, Truck and Vessel are the most common types.
Optional Discharge B/L B/L covering cargo with more than one discharge point option possibility.
Order B/L See To Order B/L or Negotiable B/L.
Original B/L The part of the B/L set that has value, especially when negotiable; rest of set are only informational file copies. Abbreviated as OBL.
Received for Shipment B/L Validated at time cargo is received by ocean carrier to commence movement but before being validated as Onboard.
Reconciled B/L B/L set which has completed a prescribed number of edits between the shippers instructions and the actual shipment received. This produces a very accurate B/L.
Short Term B/L Opposite of Long Form B.L, a B/L without the Terms & Conditions written on the back. Also known as a Short Form B/L.
Split B/L One of two or more B/L's which have been split from a single B/L.
Stale B/L A late B/L; in banking, a B/L which has passed the time deadline of the L/C and is void.
Straight (Consignment) B/L Consignment issue. See Non-Negotiable B/L.
To Order B/L Consignment issue. See Negotiable B/L.
Unique B/L Identifier U.S. Customs' standardization: four-alpha code unique to each carrier placed in front of nine digit B/L number; APL's unique B/L Identifier is APLU. Sea-land uses SEAU. These prefixes are also used as the container identification.
Voided B/L Related to Consolidated B/L; those B/L's absorbed in the combining process. Different from Canceled B/L.

Bill of Sale : Confirms the transfer of ownership of certain goods to another person in return for money paid or loaned.

Bill to Party : Customer designated as party paying for services.

Billed Weight : The weight shown in a waybill and freight bill.

Blanket Rate : 1) A rate applicable to or from a group of points; 2) A special rate applicable to several different articles in a single shipment.

Blanket Waybill : A waybill covering two or more consignments of freight.

Blind Shipment : A Bill of Lading wherein the paying customer has contracted with the carrier that shipper or consignee information is not given.

Blocked Trains : Railcars grouped in a train by destination so that segments (blocks) can be uncoupled and routed to different destinations as the train moves through various junctions. Eliminates the need to break up a train and sort individual railcars at each junction.

Blocking or Bracing : Wood or metal supports (Dunnage) to keep shipments in place to prevent cargo shifting.

Board Feet : The basic unit of measurement for lumber. One board foot is equal to a 1 inch thick board, 12 inches wide and one foot long. Thus, a board ten feet long, 12 inches wide, and one inch thick contains ten board feet.

BOE : An abbreviation for - Bureau of Explosives.

Booking : Arrangements with a carrier for the acceptance and carriage of freight; i.e., a space reservation.

Booking Number : Reservation number used to secure equipment and act as a control number prior to completion of a Bill of Lading.

Broker : A person who arranges for transportation of loads for a percentage of the revenue from the load.

Brokerage : Freight forwarder / broker compensation as specified by a tariff.

Bull Rings : Cargo-securing devices mounted in the floor of containers; allow lashing and securing of cargo.

Bulk Freight : Not in packages or containers; shipped loose in a freight car, container, trailer, or the hold of a ship. Grains, coal, and chemicals are some examples bulk freight.

Bulk-Freight Container : A container with a discharge hatch in the front wall; allows bulk commodities to be grasped through loading hatches.

Bulk Transfer : The transfer of bulk products, such as plastic pellets, or liquid sweeteners, from one mode of transportation to another. Bulk transfer permits off-rail shippers and receivers of varied commodities to combine rail's long-haul efficiencies with truck's convenient door-to-door delivery.

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Cab Signal : 1) A signal located in the engine control compartment indicating a condition affecting the movement of a train, and used in conjunction with interlocking signals and with or in lieu of block signals; 2) A signal system where the signal aspect or indication is displayed in the engineer’s cab, in addition to or in lieu of wayside signals.

CAF : An abbreviation for - Currency Adjustment Factor. A charge, expressed as a percentage of a base rate, that is applied to compensate transportation companies for currency fluctuations.

Capacity - Capacity Utilization : The percentage of total line capacity actually used for operating trains along a segment of railroad line.

Capacity - Line Capacity : The maximum number of trains which can be operated over a particular section of a main line. Theoretical capacity is governed by the signal system and represents the maximum number of trains that could be operated with following trains passing signals at maximum authorized speed just at the moment the signal displays a Clear indication. Practical capacity is a more realistic estimate of the number of trains that can be operated over a line without causing signal system delays. Typically, practical capacity is considered to be 75 percent of theoretical capacity.

Capacity - Passenger-Carrying Capacity or Service Capacity : The highest number of passengers which can be carried on a rail line in a given direction over a specified time interval (usually the peak hour), assuming full occupancy of seats plus an allowance for standees calculated on the basis of square foot per person standards for standing passengers. This value depends upon the number of trains, the number of cars per train and the seating and standing capacity of the passenger coaches used on the rail line.

Capital Costs : One-time costs for construction of facilities and infrastructure, or for the purchase of rolling stock.

Capital Improvement Program : A program of improvements or additions to rolling stock and facilities, scheduled to be implemented within a number of years. Proposed system improvements are identified by funding and source, year, and purpose.

Capitalized Costs : Expenditures that have future benefit, and thus are recorded as assets.

Car Ferry : A self-powered vessel equipped with tracks on which up to about 12 railroad cars are moved in harbors or inland waterways.

Car Seal : Metal strip and lead fastener used for locking freight car or truck doors. Seals are numbered for record purposes.

Car Utilization : Ways to measure railcar productivity. Among the measures are how much freight a car hauled, and how many trips it made in a specified period of time.

Carfloat : A non-powered barge equipped with tracks on which up to about 12 railroad cars are moved in harbors or inland waterways.

Cargo NOS : Cargo Not Otherwise Specified. Usually the first rate entry in a tariff that can apply to commodities not covered under a specific item or sub-item in the applicable tariff.

Carload : A shipment of not fewer than five (5) tons of one commodity.

Carload Rate : A rate applicable to a carload of goods.

Carrier : Any person or entity who, in a contract of carriage, undertakes to perform or to procure the performance of carriage by rail, road, sea, air, inland waterway or by a combination of such modes.

Cash Against Documents (CAD) : Method of payment for goods in which documents transferring title are given the buyer upon payment of cash to an intermediary acting for the seller, usually a commission house.

Cash in Advance (CIA) : A method of payment for goods in which the buyer pays the seller in advance of the shipment of goods. Usually employed when the goods, such as specialized machinery, are built to order.

Cash With Order (CWO) : A method of payment for goods in which cash is paid at the time of order and the transaction becomes binding on both buyer and seller.

CBM : An abbreviation for - Cubic Meter, also abbreviated CM.

Centralized Waybilling Center : A railroad facility that processes shipping instructions.

Chassis : A undercarriage with wheels and locking devices in order to secure containers or flat racks for movement.

Chock : A piece of wood or other material placed at the side of cargo to prevent rolling or moving sideways.

CKD : An abbreviation for - Cars Knocked Down. Automobile parts and subassemblies manufactured abroad and transported to a U.S. assembly plant.

CL : An abbreviation for - Carload or Containerload.

Claim : A demand made upon a transportation line for payment on account of a loss sustained through its alleged negligence.

Class I Railroad : A railroad with an average annual gross revenue - total income before taxes, or anything else comes out - of more than $250 million USD. [49CFR, Oct.1999 ed.]

Class II Railroad : A railroad with an average annual gross revenue - total income before taxes, or anything else comes out - between $20 and $250 million USD. [49CFR, Oct.1999 ed.]

Class III Railroad : 1) A railroad with an average annual gross revenue - total income before taxes, or anything else comes out - of less than $20 million USD; 2) All switching and terminal companies, regardless of their operating revenues; 3) Unless provided for otherwise, all electric railway carriers, regardless of operating revenues. [49CFR, Oct.1999 ed.]

Clayton Act : An anti-trust act of the U.S. Congress making price discrimination unlawful.

Clean Bill of Lading : A receipt for goods issued by a carrier with an indication that the goods were received in apparent good order and condition, without damage or other irregularities.

Cleaning in Transit : The stopping of articles, such as peanuts, etc., for cleaning at a point between the point of origin and destination.

Cleat : A strip of wood or metal used to afford additional strength, to prevent warping, or to hold in place.

CM or cm : An abbreviation for - 1) Cubic Meter (capital letters); 2) Centimeter (lower case letters).

COD : An abbreviation for - 1) Collect On Delivery; 2)Cash On Delivery; 3)Carried on Docket [pricing].

COFC : An abbreviation for - Container On Flat Car.

Combination Rate : A rate made up of two or more factors, separately published.

Commodity : Article shipped. For dangerous and hazardous cargo, the correct commodity identification is critical.

Commodity Code : A numerical code (typically 2, 3, 4, 5, or 7 digits) used to identify a specific type of article or articles.

Commodity Rate : A rate published to apply to a specific article or articles.

Common Carrier : A transportation company operating under a Certificate of Convenience and Necessity; provides service to the general public at published rates.

Commuter Service : Passenger rail service operated on railroad tracks to serve regional commuting needs. Typically, trains are operated toward the city in the morning (6-10am), and away form the city in the early evening (4-7pm). This service uses rail infrastructure (e.g., tracks and signal systems) and equipment similar to those in use by mainline freight, and intercity passenger railroads. Depending on the location and the operator, commuter service may share tracks with other users or may operate exclusively on dedicated tracks. Service may be all day or only during peak hours, use electric or diesel locomotives, single-level or bi-level railcars, high or ground-level platforms, and a traditional fare collection by conductors, or a barrier-free proof-of-payment system. Generally, commuter rail systems are integrated with other regional transit providers to permit transfers throughout the metropolitan region. Also see Rapid Transit, and Mass Transit.

Concealed Damage : Damage that is not evident from viewing the unopened package.

Conductor : The individual responsible for the safe and proper management of the train.

Connecting Carrier : 1) A carrier which has a direct physical connection with, or forms a link between two or more carriers; 2) A railroad with a physical connection to another.

Consignee : The party designated on the bill of lading as the entity entitled to receive delivery of the goods from the carrier. A person or company to whom commodities are shipped. Officially, the legal owner of the cargo.

Consignment : 1) A stock of merchandise advanced to a dealer and located at his place of business, but with title remaining in the source of supply; 2) A shipment of goods to a consignee.

Consignor : The party designated on the bill of lading as the entity which has caused the goods to be consigned into transportation. The person or company that is shipping / sending the goods.

Consist : 1) Typically, the equipment that is coupled together to form a train - locomotives, freight cars, passenger cars, etc. - it refers to the actual rolling stock, not the service provided; 2) A document that lists the equipment in a train.

Container : A large, weatherproof box designed for shipping freight in bulk by rail, truck or steamship. Typically, a truck trailer body that can be detached from the chassis for loading into a vessel, a rail car or stacked in a container depot. Containers may be ventilated, refrigerated, insulated, flat rack, vehicle rack, open top, bulk liquid or equipped with interior devices. A container may be 20', 40', 45', 48', or 53' in length, 8'0" or 8'6" in width, and 8'6" or 9'6" in height.

Containerizable Cargo : Cargo that will fit into a container and result in an economical shipment.

Container Load : A load sufficient in size to fill a container either by cubic measurement or by weight.

Container Terminal : An area designated for the stowage of cargoes in container; it is usually accessible by one or more modes of transport - truck, railroad, aircraft, and marine. Here containers are picked up, dropped off, maintained and housed.

Contraband : Cargo that is prohibited.

Contract : A legally binding agreement between two or more persons / organizations to carry out reciprocal obligations or value.

Contract Carrier : Any person not a common carrier who, under special and individual contracts or agreements, transports passengers or property for compensation.

Contract Operator : Independent organization (private or public) performing all or some operating and maintenance functions on a rail line.

Controlled Atmosphere : Sophisticated, computer-controlled systems that manage the mixtures of gases within a container throughout an intermodal journey reducing decay.

Controlled Point or CP : A place where signals and other functions of a traffic control system are remotely controlled from the Control Station.

Controlled Siding : A siding whose use is governed by signals under the control of a train dispatcher or operator.

Corner Posts : Vertical frame components fitted at the corners of the container, integral to the corner fittings and connecting the roof and floor structures. Containers are lifted and secured in a stack using the castings at the ends.

Cu. : An abbreviation for Cubic. A unit of volume measurement.

Cube Out : When a container has reached its volumetric capacity before its permitted weight limit.

Cubic Foot : Equal to 1,728 cubic inches.

Current of Traffic : The assigned direction of a main track, as specified in the Timetable.

Customs : Government agency charged with enforcing the rules passed to protect the country's import revenues.

Customs Bonded Warehouse : A warehouse in any country authorized and established by Customs.

Customs Invoice : A form requiring all data in a commercial invoice along with a certificate of value and / or a certificate of origin. Required in a few countries (usually former British territories) and usually serves as a seller's commercial invoice.

Cut-Off Time : The latest time a container may be delivered to a terminal for loading to a scheduled train or ship.

Cwt. : An abbreviation for Hundred Weight - 100 US pounds.

Cycle time : The length of time consumed by a freight car from one loading to the next.

 D Back to top

Day : A period of time equal to - 1) 24 hours; 2) 1,440 minutes; 3) 86,400 seconds.

D.B.A. : An abbreviation for - Doing Business As. A legal term for conducting business under a registered name.

Deadhead Hours : The hours that a vehicle travels when out of revenue service.

Deadhead Miles : The miles that a vehicle travels when out of revenue service.

Deadweight Cargo : A long ton of cargo that can be stowed in less than 70 cubic feet.

Deficit Weight : The weight by which a shipment is less than the minimum weight.

Delivery : Arrival at actual destination, either rail or shipper's facility.

Demurrage : A penalty charge against shippers or consignees for delaying the carrier's equipment beyond the allowed free time provision of the tariff.

Density : The weight of freight per cubic foot or other unit.

Destination : 1) The place to which a shipment is consigned; 2) The place where carrier actually turns over cargo to consignee or his agent.

Detention Charges : Compensation due a vehicle owner when its equipment is detained beyond an agreed period of time.

Diamond Crossing : A location where two railroad tracks cross each other without the ability for trains to switch from one track to the other. Diamond crossings can be at right angles or skewed.

Differential : An amount added or deducted from base rate to make a rate to or from some other point or via another route.

Directional Miles (track miles, route miles) : Mileage in each direction over which public transportation vehicles travel while in revenue service. Directional route miles are a measure of the track, not the service carried on the tracks. For example, a one-mile segment of track over which trains operate in both directions are two directional route miles regardless of the number of trains that used all or part of that segment.

Dispatching : The process by which movement of trains over a railroad is prioritized and authorized. The dispatching function can be carried out either at a single central control facility or at several remote locations, or towers, along the railroad.

Displacement : The weight, in tons of 2,240 pounds, of the vessel and its contents. Calculated by dividing the volume of water displaced in cubic feet by 35, the average density of sea water.

Distribution Center : The centrally located warehouse where goods shipped long distances by rail are loaded onto trucks for short-haul delivery to receivers, or vice versa. Also called a reload center, it combines the economies of rail with the flexibility of truck pickup and delivery.

Diversion : The term Diversion can be used interchangeably with Reconsignment. 1) Any request for a change in the bill of lading, waybill, service order, or shipping documents, and is applicable to cars that are in HLS's possession, as a line haul carrier; 2) Changing the consignee or destination on a bill of lading while shipment is still in transit.

Division : Carriers' practice of dividing revenue received from through rates where joint hauls are involved. This is usually according to agreed formulae.

D.O.T. : An abbreviation for Department of Transportation.

DRFS : An abbreviation for - Destination Rail Freight Station. The name of the station - town name and state, and / or station ID number - to which the shipment destined.

Drayage : Trucking services intended for rail intermodal shipments such as cross-towns, trailer terminations, pickups and deliveries.

Drayage Charges : Charges made for local hauling by dray or truck.

Drayman : The driver of the truck, or owner of the trucking company performing the trucking / drayage services.

Driver Assist : When the drayman is required to load, unload, or assist in the loading, or unloading of vehicles.

Driver Standby : When the drayman is required to wait with a vehicle at the actual origin or actual destination.

Drop and Pull : When a drayman leaves a vehicle at a shipper's facility to load or unload with the intention of picking up the loaded or empty vehicle at a later scheduled time.

Dry Cargo : Cargo that does not require temperature control.

Dry-Bulk Container : A container constructed to carry grain, powder and other free-flowing solids in bulk. Used in conjunction with a tilt chassis or platform.

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EDI : An abbreviation for - Electronic Data Interchange or Electronic Data Interface. Generic term for transmission of transactional data between computer systems. EDI is typically via a batched transmission, usually conforming to consistent standards.

EDIFACT : International data interchange standards sponsored by the United Nations.

Elkins Act : An act of Congress (1903) prohibiting rebates, concession, misbilling, etc. and providing specific penalties for such violations.

Embargo : Order to restrict the hauling of freight.

Eminent Domain : The sovereign power to take property for a necessary public use, with reasonable compensation.

Equalization : A monetary allowance to the customer for picking up or delivering at a point other than the destination shown on the bill of lading. This provision is covered by tariff publication.

ETA : An abbreviation for - 1) Estimated Time of Arrival; 2) Estimated Time of Availability. That time when a piece of equipment (container, trailer, freight car) is available for dispatch.

Evasion Rate : Percentage of passengers who ride transit services without paying the required fare.

Exception : Notations made when the cargo is received at the carrier's terminal or loaded aboard a vessel. They show any irregularities in packaging or actual or suspected damage to the cargo. Exceptions are then noted on the bill of lading.

Exempt : Not governed by Federal Regulatory Boards.

Expiry Date : Issued in connection with documents such as letters of credit, tariffs etc. to advise that stated provisions will expire at a certain time.

Export Rate : A rate published on traffic moving from an interior point to a port for transshipment to a foreign country.

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40 CFR : Code of Federal Regulations of the United States Environmental Protection Agency.

49 CFR : Code of Federal Regulations of the United States Surface Transportation Board, the Department of Transportation, and the Federal Railroad Administration.

FAF : An abbreviation for - Fuel Adjustment Factor. Used to compensate transportation companies for fluctuating fuel costs.

FAK : An abbreviation for - Freight All Kinds. Usually refers to full container loads of mixed shipments.

False Billing : Misrepresenting freight or weight on shipping documents.

Farebox Recovery Ratio : Percentage of operating costs covered by passenger fares collected.

FCL : An abbreviation for - Full Container Load or Full Car Load.

F.D.A. : An abbreviation for - the Food and Drug Administration.

Feasibility Study : Initial research needed to assess the viability of a project. May be conducted by an outside consultant and typically includes patronage forecasts, operating requirements, preliminary cost estimates, and institutional analysis.

Federal Employees Liability Act (FELA) : Governs the compensation of injured railroad employees.

Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) : Within the United States of Transportation, administers the Federal Railway Act, among other activities. FRA assesses user fees on all railroads to support the Administration and is responsible for federal safety rules and regulations for public and private rail operations.

Federal Transit Administration (FTA) : Within the United States Department of Transportation, formerly known as the Urban Mass Transit Administration (UMTA), the FTA administers the Federal Transit Act, as amended, and provides grants to support commuter rail capital and operating costs.

Federal Transit Administration Section 3 Assistance : Funds obtained through Section 3 of the Federal Transit Act, as amended. This section enables Congress and the Secretary of Transportation to make discretionary capital grants to states and local public entities to finance specific types of public transportation projects. Section 3 funds are usually divided among rail modernization, new rail starts, bus planning and other projects, including transportation of elderly and disabled individuals.

Federal Transit Administration Section 9 Assistance : Funds obtained through Section 9 of the Federal Transit Act, as amended. This section governs the distribution of the public transit capital and operating block grant appropriations made by Congress each year among urbanized areas across the nation. Funds are distributed according to a formula that takes into account the size of the area served and the amount of service provided.

Feeder Bus : Bus transport servicing or feeding passengers, typically to rail travel (commuter rail or heavy rail), over relatively short distances.

FEU : An abbreviation for - Forty-Foot Equivalent Units. Refers to container size standard of forty feet. Two twenty-foot containers or TEU's equal one FEU.

Firkin : A capacity measurement equal to one-fourth of a barrel.

Fixed Costs : Costs that do not vary with the level of activity. Some fixed costs continue even if no cargo is carried. Terminal leases, rent, and property taxes are fixed costs.

Force Mejeure : The title of a common clause in contracts, exempting the parties for non-fulfillment of their obligations as a result of conditions beyond their control, such as earthquakes, floods or war.

Foreign Trade Zone : A free port in a country divorced from Customs authority but under government control. Merchandise, except that which is prohibited, may be stored in the zone without being subject to import duty regulations.

Fork Lift : A machine used to pick up and move goods loaded on pallets or skids.

Four-Way Pallet : A pallet designed so that the forks of a fork lift truck can be inserted from all four sides. See Fork lift.

Foul Bill of Lading : A receipt for goods issued by a carrier with an indication that the goods were damaged when received. Compare Clean Bill of Lading.

Free Astray : An astray shipment (a lost shipment that is found) sent to its proper destination without additional charge.

Free Time : That amount of time that a carrier's equipment may be used without incurring additional charges. (See Demurrage or Per Diem.)

Free Trade Zone : A port designated by the government of a country for duty-free entry of any non-prohibited goods. Merchandise may be stored, displayed, used for manufacturing, etc., within the zone and re-exported without duties.

Freight : Refers to either the cargo carried or the charges assessed for carriage of the cargo.

Freight Bill : A document issued by the carrier based on the bill of lading and other information; used to account for a shipment operationally, statistically, and financially.

Freight Forwarder : A person whose business is to act as an agent on behalf of the shipper. A freight forwarder frequently makes the booking reservation.

Freight Payor : The party responsible for payment of the line haul freight charges to the billed destination of record at the time of the diversion request.

Frequency : The number of trains per unit of time passing a particular point in a single direction. The unit of time is usually one hour. [Inverse of headway]

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General Order : Order issued by authority of and over the signature of the designated official, which contains changes in rules, Timetables and other instructions.

Grade Crossing : 1) The point at which two rail lines intersect, also called a Diamond Crossing; 2) The point at which a roadway intersects a rail line.

Greenwich Mean Time : Another name for Zulu Time. GMT / ZT is used on shipping contracts, and some tariffs, when a shipment either needs to be delivered, or is guaranteed to be delivered, by a certain time.

Gross Cargo Weight : Total weight of lading (cargo), including blocking, bracing and pallets.

Gross Ton : A unit of measure equal to 2,240 pounds. See also Short Ton.

Gross Ton-mile : The movement of the combined weight of cars and their contents a distance of one mile.

Gross Tonnage : Applies to vessels, not to cargo. Determined by dividing the vessel's interior spaces by 100 cubic feet. A vessel ton is 100 cubic feet.

Gross Weight : Entire weight of goods, packaging, and freight car or container, ready for shipment. Generally, 80,000 pounds is the maximum weight for container, cargo, and tractor for highway transport, and 272,000 pounds is the maximum for cargo, and freight car (4 axle cars) for railroad transport.

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Haulage Rights : Rights obtained by one railroad to have its trains operated by another railroad over that railroad's tracks.

HAZ MAT, HAZMAT, or HAZ-MAT : An abbreviation for - Hazardous Material.

Hazardous Commodities : Materials as defined by the DOT in the Code of Federal Regulations (49 CFR) as hazardous materials, hazardous wastes and hazardous substances.

Headway : The time interval between two trains passing a particular point in the same direction. The unit of time is usually expressed in minutes. [Inverse of frequency]

HLS : An abbreviation for - Hoosier Lines System. For the sake of brevity, HLS shall be understood to include any other carrier or agents thereof, to the extent that joint rates between HLS and any of such other carriers are included in the pricing authority.

Holidays : Typically, a national day of observance of some religious or historical event. On observed holidays, freight train service is curtailed, or stopped altogether, for that day(s).

HLS Observed Holidays
While Vehicle Is InThese Holidays Will Be Observed
The United StatesNew Year's Day - Jan. 1
Presidents' Day
Memorial Day (or Decoration Day)
Independence Day - July 4th
Labor Day
Thanksgiving Day
Friday after Thanksgiving
Christmas Eve - Dec. 24
Christmas Day - Dec. 25
New Year's Eve - Dec. 31

Note : If any holiday occurs on a Sunday, the following Monday is a holiday.
CanadaNew Year's Day - Jan. 1
Good Friday
Memorial Day
Independence Day
Civic Day
Labor Day
Thanksgiving Day
Christmas Day - Dec. 25
Mexico New Year's Day - Jan. 1
Mexican Constitution Anniversary
Benito Juarez's Birthday
Holy Thursday
Good Friday
Labor Day
Battle of Puebla
Independence Day
Columbus Day
President's Report
Day of the Dead
Revolution Anniversary
Our Lady of Guadalupe
Christmas Day - Dec. 25

Hoosier Lines System : 1) Service mark for Breckenridge Industries' railroad companies; 2) Common reference term for all class I, II, and III railroads and rapid transit companies owned, controlled, or operated by Breckenridge Industries.

Hub Center : Any designated facility for interchange of intermodal vehicles for ramping / deramping or vehicle delivery or pickup.

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I.C.C. or ICC : An abbreviation for - 1) Interstate Commerce Commission; 2) International Chamber of Commerce.

IMX Facility : Intermodal Marketing Extension facility, which provides over-the-road transportation to and from a railroad's hub center.

Incentive Rate : A lower-than-usual tariff rate assessed because a shipper offers a greater volume than specified in the tariff. The incentive rate is assessed for that portion exceeding the normal volume.

Indemnity Bond : An agreement to hold a carrier harmless with regard to a liability.

Industrial Railroad : Typically a railroad owned, and operated, by an industry to move cars within its property, and to and from an interchange with a common carrier railroad. Industrial railroads are usually not common carriers, don't serve any customers other than their owner, and don't get paid for their services.

Inherent Vice : An insurance term referring to any defect or other characteristic of a product that could result in damage to the product without external cause (for example, instability in a chemical that could cause it to explode spontaneously). Insurance policies may exclude inherent vice losses.

Insurance with Average-clause : This type of clause covers merchandise if the damage amounts to three percent or more of the insured value of the package or cargo. If the vessel burns, sinks, collides, or sinks, all losses are fully covered. In marine insurance, the word average describes partial damage or partial loss.

Insurance, All-risk : This type of insurance offers the shipper the broadest coverage available, covering against all losses that may occur in transit.

Insurance, General-Average : This clause covers damages or losses arising from maritime ventures or losses arising for all parties shipping or owing.

Insurance, Particular Average : A Marine insurance term to refer to partial loss on an individual shipment from one of the perils insured against, regardless of the balance of the cargo. Particular-average insurance can usually be obtained, but the loss must be in excess of a certain percentage of the insured value of the shipment, usually three to five percent, before a claim will be allowed by the company.

Interchange : 1) The transfer of a vehicle from one rail carrier to another; 2) The location where such transfers take place.

Interline Freight : Freight moving from origin to destination over the Freight lines of two or more transportation carriers.

Interlocking : A location on the railroad where turnouts, crossovers and diamonds are centrally controlled, to ensure the safe and smooth flow of trains. Typically located where rail lines intersect or merge, where yards, passing sidings or branch lines join the mainline, or where crossovers between mainline tracks are located. An interlocking is composed of signals and signal appliances interconnected so that their movements must succeed each other in a prearranged sequence and for which interlocking rules are in effect.

Interlocking Limits : The tracks between the opposing home signals of an interlocking.

Intermodal : Used to denote movements of cargo containers interchangeably between two or more transport modes - rail, sea, air, and road - and where the equipment is compatible within the multiple systems.

International : Shipments with a prior or subsequent water move or when the shipper has proof of importation / exportation to or from the territories of the U.S. (which include the Panama Canal Zone), Hawaii or foreign countries. International rates do not apply to shipments between the Continental U.S., Mexico, Canada or Alaska.

Interstate Commerce Commission : Abbreviated I.C.C. or ICC, it was the U.S. federal body charged with enforcing acts of the U.S. Congress that affect common carriers in interstate commerce. It has been replaced by the Surface Transportation Board.

Interurban Railroad : A nearly extinct form of electric railway that was popular, in the United States, between 1900 and 1940. Operating between urban areas, hence its name, some of these systems operated 100+ route miles and included trolley car subsidiaries. Interurbans, which were built a bit lighter than regular railroads, used trolley car like equipment for passenger service, and either similar looking cars, or steeple or box cab electrics, to haul freight cars. Typically, the majority of an Interurban's trackage was either laid in or alongside roads, rather than on a private right of way. The Iowa Terminal Railroad (Mason City,IA) [freight], and the Chicago South Shore & South Bend Railroad (Chicago,IL - South Bend,IN) [passenger] are two examples of surviving Interurbans.

Invoice : An itemized list of goods shipped to a buyer, stating quantities, prices, shipping charges, etc.

ISO or I.S.O. : An abbreviation for - International Standards Organization. The ISO deals in standards of all sorts, ranging from documentation to equipment packaging and labeling.

Issuing Carrier : The carrier issuing transportation documents or publishing a tariff.

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JIT : An abbreviation for - Just In Time. In this method of inventory control, warehousing is minimal or non-existent; the container is the movable warehouse and must arrive just in time; not too early nor too late.

Joint Rate : A rate applicable from a point on one transportation line to a point on another line, made by agreement and published in a single tariff by all transportation lines over which the rate applies.

Journey-to-Work Trips : Trips between residences and work places, as measured by the decennial census. Typically the largest potential market for commuter rail service.

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KT : An abbreviation for - Kilo Ton, also called Metric Ton. It equals 1,000 kilos, or 2,204.6 pounds.

Kilogram : Unit of measure equal to 1,000 grams, or 2.2046 pounds.

Knocked Down (KD) : Articles which are taken apart to reduce the cubic footage displaced or to make a better shipping unit and are to be re-assembled.

Knot : The nautical mile (6,082.66 feet). In the days of sail, speed was measured by tossing overboard a log which was secured by a line. Knots were tied into the line at intervals of approximately six feet. The number of knots measured was then compared against time required to travel the distance of 1000 knots in the line.

Known Loss : A loss discovered before or at the time of delivery of a shipment.

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Lading : Refers to the freight shipped; the contents of a shipment.

LCL : An abbreviation for - 1) Less than Container Load; 2) Less than Car Load. The quantity of freight which is less than that required for the application of a 1) container load rate / 2) carload rate. Loose freight. Package freight carried loosely in a baggage / box / express car on freight or passenger trains.

Letter of Credit (LC) : A document, issued by a bank per instructions by a buyer of goods, authorizing the seller to draw a specified sum of money under specified terms, usually the receipt by the bank of certain documents within a given time. Some of the specific descriptions are :

Back-to-Back A secondary letter of credit issued to a beneficiary on the strength of a primary credit.
Clean A letter of credit that requires the beneficiary to present only a draft or a receipt for specified funds before receiving payment.
Confirmed A revolving letter of credit that permits any amount not utilized during any of the specified periods to be carried over and added to amounts available in later periods.
Deferred Payment A letter of credit issued for the purchase and financing of merchandise, similar to acceptance-type letter of credit, except that it requires presentation of sight drafts payable on an installment basis.
Irrevocable An instrument that, once established, cannot be modified or canceled without the agreement of all parties concerned.
Non-cumulative A revolving letter of credit that prohibits the amount not used during the specific period to be available afterwards.
Restricted A condition within the letter of credit which restricts its negotiation to a named bank.
Revocable An instrument that can be modified or canceled at any moment without notice to and agreement of the beneficiary, but customarily includes a clause in the credit to the effect that any draft negotiated by a bank prior to the receipt of a notice of revocation or amendment will be honored by the issuing bank.
Revolving An irrevocable letter issued for a specific amount; renews itself for the same amount over a given period.
Straight A letter of credit that contains a limited engagement clause which states that the issuing bank promises to pay the beneficiary upon presentation of the required documents at its counters or the counters of the named bank.
Transferable A letter of credit that allows the beneficiary to transfer in whole or in part any amount which, in aggregate, of such transfers does not exceed the amount of the credit.
Unconfirmed A letter of credit forwarded to the beneficiary by the advising bank without engagement on the part of the advising bank.

Letter of Indemnity : When a bank does not wish to accept a foul bill of lading, the shipper (so that there shall be nothing to prevent the draft in question from being discounted, or for any other reason) may obtain a clean bill of lading. To do so, the shipper signs a letter of indemnity on the basis of which may be obtained the clean bill of lading, although other documents showed that the shipment was damaged, or in bad condition.

Level of Service (LOS) : The degree of peak congestion experienced on a rail line, at a rail terminal or within a railroad facility.

Lien : A legal claim upon goods for the satisfaction of some debt or duty.

Line Capacity : The maximum number of trains that can operate safely and reliably over a given segment of track during a given period of time.

Line-Haul Railroad : A railroad that performs point-to-point service, as distinguished from a switching or terminal railroad. For line-haul railroads, interline revenue is usually some portion of the through rate.

Liter : A unit of measure equal to 1.06 liquid U.S. quarts, or 33.9 fluid ounces.

Load Factor : The actual number of passengers using a vehicle or coach divided by the passenger capacity (usually expressed as a percentage).

Load Ratio : The ratio of loaded miles to empty miles that a piece of equipment - freight car, container, trailer, etc. - travels.

Long Ton : A unit of measure equal to 2,240 pounds.

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Malpractice : A carrier giving a customer special preference to attract cargo. This can take the form of a money refund (rebate); using lower figures than actual for the assessment of freight charges (undercubing); misdeclaration of the commodity shipped to allow the assessment of a lower tariff rate; waiving published tariff charges for demurrage, CFS handling or equalization; providing specialized equipment to a shipper to the detriment of other shippers, etc.

Mandamus : A writ issued by a court; requires that specific things be done.

Manifest : Listing of the commodities within a vehicle and their quantities.

Maritime : Business pertaining to commerce, or navigation, transacted upon the sea, or in seaports in such matters as the court of admiralty has jurisdiction.

Mass Transit : HLS term for non-rail transit operations. Mass transit operations typically includes : bus, trolley bus, jitney, sky tram, people mover, and mono-rail.

Maximum Authorized Speed : The maximum speed limit over a section of track.

MBM : A unit of measure equal to 1,000 board feet. One MBM equals 2,265 C.M.

Measurement Cargo : Freight on which transportation charges are calculated on the basis of volume measurement.

Measurement Ton : A unit of measure equal to 40 cubic feet.

Meter : A unit of measure equal to approximately 39.37 inches.

Metric Ton : A unit of measure equal to 2,204.6 pounds, or 1,000 kilograms.

Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) : The area-wide agency responsible for conducting the continuous, cooperative and comprehensive urban transportation planning process. It is also the single, region-wide recipient of the federal funds for transportation planning purposes. together with the state, it carries out the planning and programming activities necessary for federal capital funding assistance. The MPO is designated by agreement among the various units of local government and the Governor.

Mile : A unit of measure equal to 5,280 feet.

Minimum Bill of Lading : A clause in a Bill of lading which specifies the least charge that the carrier will make for issuing a lading. The charge may be a definite sum or the current charge per ton for any specified quantity.

Minimum Charge : The lowest charge that can be assessed to transport a shipment.

Mixed Container Load : A container load of different articles in a single consignment.

Modified Atmosphere : A blend of gases tailored to replace the normal atmosphere within a container.

MT : An abbreviation for - Metric Ton or Cubic Meter, whichever produces the greater revenue. Most often used in reference to shipping charges.

Multimodal : Employing two or more modes of transportation.

MultiTank Container : A container frame fitted to accommodate two or more separate tanks for liquids.

Municipal Slow Zones : Local zoning requirements, or safety-related restrictions, applying within municipalities to reduce train operating speeds.

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NEC : An abbreviation for - Not Elsewhere Classified.

Negotiable Instruments : A document of title (such as a draft, promissory note, check, or bill of lading) transferable from one person to another in good faith for a consideration. Non-negotiable bills of lading are known as straight consignment. Negotiable bills are known as Order B/L's.

Nested : Articles packed so that one rests partially or entirely within another, thereby reducing the cubic-foot displacement.

Net Short Ton : A unit of measure equal to 2,000 pounds.

Net Tare Weight : The weight of an empty cargo-carrying piece of equipment plus any fixtures permanently attached.

Net Ton-mile : The movement of a ton of freight one mile.

Net Tonnage : A vessel's gross tonnage minus deductions of space occupied by accommodations for crew, by machinery, for navigation, by the engine room and fuel. A vessel's net tonnage expresses the space available for passengers and cargo.

Net Weight : Weight of the goods alone without any immediate wrappings, e.g., the weight of the contents of a tin can without the weight of the can.

NOI : An abbreviation for - Not Otherwise Indexed.

NOIBN : An abbreviation for - Not Otherwise Indexed By Name.

Non-Revenue Rolling Stock : Any rolling stock that is not used to directly generate revenue for the company. These include locomotives, most MofW equipment, cabooses, and rider cars.

NOS : An abbreviation for - Not Otherwise Specified.

Notification : Act of a company advising the Notify Party that a vehicle is available for pickup / delivery or loading / unloading, or if there is an error in documentation.

Notify Party : Person identified on the billing to be notified on shipment availability (typically the shipper, receiver, beneficial owner, drayman or their agents, employees or contractors).

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Ocean Carrier : Synonymous with shipper and receiver.

Off-peak : Times of day that are outside of the peak periods (e.g., early morning, mid-day, late evening, weekends, and holidays).

On-Time Performance : Percentage of trains that arrive at their destinations within a specified time window of the scheduled arrival time (typically 5 to 6 minutes for commuter rail lines).

Operating Expenses : All expenses associated with the operation of an individual mode by a given operator. Operating expenses exclude reconciling items such as interest expenses.

Operating Ratio : The percentage of revenues that goes into operating a company. It is calculated by dividing the company's operating expenses by its operating revenues. For example, if a company had operating revenues of $100 and operating expenses of $70, then its operating ratio would be 70% (70 divided by 100 = 0.7 or 70%).

Operation Lifesaver : A grassroots organization that provides public information, and an education program, to help prevent and reduce crashes, injuries, and fatalities, and improve driver performance at public, and private, highway-rail grade crossings.

Operations & Maintenance (O&M) costs : Costs incurred on a regular basis to operate the railroad system, and to maintain the rolling stock and railroad infrastructure in a state of good repair.

Order-Notify (O/N) : A bill of lading term to provide surrender of the original bill of lading before freight is released; usually associated with a shipment covered under a letter of credit.

ORFS : An abbreviation for - Origin Rail Freight Station. The name of the station - town name and state, and / or station ID number - from which the shipment originated.

Origin : Location where shipment begins its movement.

Original Bill of Lading (OBL) : A document which requires proper signatures for consummating carriage of contract.

Overcharge : To charge more than the proper amount according to the published rates.

Overland Common Point (OCP) : A term stated on the bills of lading offering lower shipping rates to importers east of the Rockies, provided merchandise from the Far East comes in through the West Coast ports. OCP rates were established by U.S. West Coast steamship companies in conjunction with western railroads so that cargo originating or destined for the American Midwest and East would be competitive with all-water rates via the U.S. Atlantic and Gulf ports. Applies to eastern Canada.

Owner Code (SCAC) : Standard Carrier Abbreviation Code identifying an individual common carrier. A three letter carrier code followed by a suffix identifies the carrier's equipment. A suffix of U is a container and C is a chassis.

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Packing List : Itemized list of commodities with marks / numbers but no cost values indicated.

PADAG : An abbreviation for - Please Authorize Delivery Against Guarantee. A request from the consignee to the shipper to allow the carrier or agent to release cargo against a guarantee, either bank or personal. Made when the consignee is unable to produce original bills of lading.

Pallet : A platform with or without sides, on which a number of packages or pieces may be loaded to facilitate handling by a lift truck.

Paper Rate : A published rate that is never assessed because no freight moves under it.

Passenger Miles : A measure of service utilization which represents the cumulative sum of the distances ridden by each passenger. For example : ten passengers riding in a vehicle for two miles equals 20 passenger miles.

Passenger Trips - Linked : The number of journeys made by passengers from origins to destinations, regardless of the number of modes of transportation used.

Passenger Trips - Unlinked : The number of passengers who board public transportation revenue vehicles. A passenger is counted each time he/she boards a vehicle, even though he/she may be on the same journey from origin to destination.

Payee : A party named in an instrument as the beneficiary of the funds. Under letters of credit, the payee is either the drawer of the draft or a bank.

Payer : A party responsible for the payment as evidenced by the given instrument. Under letters of credit, the payer is the party on whom the draft is drawn, usually the drawee bank.

Peak Direction : The direction of travel with the highest passenger demand, usually inbound towards the central business district in the morning, and outbound in the evening.

Peak Hour : The hour in which the passenger demand in the peak direction is the highest during the day.

Peak Load Point : The location on a rail line where the maximum number of passengers are on-board trains during the peak periods. Often, this location is near the central business district.

Peak Period : Period of greatest travel demand. On systems operating all day, the time(s) of the day and day(s) of the week when additional services are provided to handle higher passenger volumes. The period begins when base headways are reduced and ends when headways return to normal.

Per Diem : A term from Latin meaning - "Per Day". A charge, based on a fixed daily rate, made by one transportation line against another for the use of its equipment.

Person : Includes, but not limited to, individuals, sole proprietors, partnerships, corporations, associations, cooperatives, trusts and other entities.

Pickup : 1) Leaving actual origin ramp or shipper's facility as a load; 2) The act of calling for freight by vehicle at the consignor's shipping platform.

Pier : The structure perpendicular to the shoreline to which a vessel is secured for the purpose of loading and unloading cargo.

Piggyback : A transportation arrangement in which truck trailers with their loads are moved by train to a destination. Also known as TOFC - Trailer On Flat Car.

Place of Delivery : Place where cargo leaves the care and custody of carrier.

Place of Receipt : Location where cargo enters the care and custody of carrier.

Point of Origin : The station at which a shipment is received by a carrier from the shipper.

Pomerene Act : Also known as the Federal Bill of Lading Act of 1916, it's a U.S. federal law enacting conditions by which a Bill of Lading may be issued. Penalties for issuing B/L's containing false data include monetary fines and / or imprisonment.

Pre-cooling : A process employed in the shipment of citrus fruits and other perishable commodities. The fruit is packed and placed in a cold room from which the heat is gradually extracted. The boxes of fruit are packed in containers that have been thoroughly cooled and transported through to destination without opening the doors.

Prepaid (Ppd.) : Payment made to originating carrier prior to the shipment's release. Typically paid by the consignor (shipper).

Private Car : A car bearing other than railroad reporting marks, and which is not a railroad controlled car [see below].

Pro Forma : A Latin term meaning - For The Sake Of Form.

Pro Forma Invoice : An invoice provided by a supplier prior to the shipment of merchandise, informing the buyer of the kinds and quantities of goods to be sent, their value, and specifications (weight, size, etc.).

Pro Rata : A Latin term meaning - In Proportion.

Project Rate : Single tariff item, established to move multiple commodities needed for a specified project, usually construction.

Proof-of-Payment (POP) : A barrier-free ticketing and fare collection system in which the patron is responsible for having a valid ticket, which may be confirmed randomly by the conductor.

Public Service Commission : A name usually given to a State body having control or regulation of public utilities.

Publishing Agent : Person authorized by transportation lines to publish tariffs or rates, rules, and regulations for their account.

Push-Pull : A method of train operation that enables a train to be operated in either the in-bound or out-bound direction without the need to turn the train. Requires that a cab car be located on the end of the train opposite the locomotive. In pull mode, the locomotive is at the front of the train. In push mode, the cab car is at the front of the train, and the engineer operates the train from that cab.

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Quarantine : A restraint placed on an operation to protect the public against a health hazard. A ship may be quarantined so that it cannot leave a protected point. During the quarantine period, the Q flag is hoisted.

Quoin : A wedge-shaped piece of timber used to secure barrels against movement.

Quota : 1) The maximum number of items allowed, such as the number of carloads that can be moved at one time under a tariff's rates; 2) The minimum number of items required, such as to qualify for a discount rate; 3) The quantity of goods that may be imported without restriction or additional duties or taxes.

Quotation : An offer to sell goods or services at a stated price and under stated terms.

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Rail-Controlled Drayage : Railroad performed drayage for pickup or delivery of a shipment.

Rail-Controlled Equipment : Equipment owned or leased by a railroad.

Railroad Controlled Car : A car, bearing other than railroad reporting marks, provided to a railroad directly by car companies, or others, for use by a railroad in serving any of its customers.

Railroad Retirement Board : Among other responsibilities, determines whether commuter rail operators must cover their employees under the terms of the Railroad Retirement System.

Railway Labor Executive Association (RLEA) : 18 separate unions associating for purposes of lobbying and collective bargaining.

Railway Labor Act : Federal law that, among other requirements, provides a mechanism for responding to rail labor disputes.

Ramp : Railroad terminal where containers are received or delivered and trains loaded or discharged. Originally, trailers moved onto the rearmost flatcar via a ramp and driven into position in a technique known as circus loading. Most modern rail facilities use lifting equipment to position containers onto the flatcars.

Ramp-to-Door : A movement where the load initiates at an origin rail ramp and terminates at a consignee's door.

Ramp-to-Ramp : A movement of equipment from an origin rail ramp to a destination rail ramp only.

Rapid Transit : HLS term for rail based transit operations. Rapid transit operations typically includes : trolley, subway and elevated lines, street cars, and cable cars. Mono-rails are considered mass transit vehicles.

Rate Basis : A formula of the specific factors or elements that control the making of a rate. A rate can be based on any number of factors (i.e., weight, measure, equipment type, package, box, etc.).

Reasonableness : Under ICC and common law, the requirement that a rate not be higher than is necessary to reimburse the carrier for the actual cost of transporting the traffic and allow a fair profit.

Rebate : An illegal form of discounting or refunding that has the net effect of lowering the tariff price. See also Malpractice.

Receiver : Person receiving the shipment at destination and including receiver's agents, employees and independent contractors acting on behalf of the receiver. Person receiving vehicle, may or may not be final destination.

Reconsignment : The term Diversion can be used interchangeably with Reconsignment. 1) Any request for a change in the bill of lading, waybill, service order, or shipping documents, and is applicable to cars that are in HLS's possession, as a line haul carrier; 2) Changing the consignee or destination on a bill of lading while shipment is still in transit.

Red Label : A label required on shipments of flammable articles.

Reefer : A refrigerated container or freight car.

Related Points : A group of points to which rates are made the same as or in relation to rates to other points in group.

Restricted Articles : Articles handled only under certain conditions.

Return On Equity : Net income divided by average stockholders' equity.

Revenue Hours : Number of hours a vehicle travels while in revenue service.

Revenue Miles : Number of miles a vehicle travels while in revenue service.

Revenue Rolling Stock : Any rolling stock that used to directly generate revenue for the company. These include freight cars, passenger cars, and some MofW equipment.

Revenue Service : A vehicle is in revenue service when the vehicle is available to the general public. Vehicles operated in free fare service are considered to be in revenue service.

Revenue Ton : A ton on which the shipment is freighted. If cargo is rated as weight or measure (WORM), whichever produces the highest revenue will be considered the revenue ton.

Revenue Ton-mile : The movement of a ton of freight one mile for revenue.

Reverse Peak : The direction opposite the major direction of passenger and train flows during the peak periods (i.e., away from the central business district in the morning peak, and towards the central business district in the evening peak).

Ridership Forecast : Number of passengers projected to ride the proposed transit service.

Right Of Way : The property owned by a railroad over which tracks have been laid.

Rolling Stock : A collective term for the cars and locomotives used by a railroad company.

Route : The manner in which a shipment moves; i.e., the carriers handling it and the points at which the carriers interchange.

Route Miles : The length of a railroad line, regardless of the number of tracks.

RVNX : An abbreviation for - Released Value Not Exceeding. Usually used to limit the value of goods transported.The limitation refers to carrier liability when paying a claim for lost or damaged goods.

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Schedule : That part of a Timetable which prescribes direction, number, frequency and times for movement of scheduled trains.

Scheduled Train : A train designated by Timetable Schedule.

Service Contract : As provided in the Shipping Act of 1984, a contract between a shipper (or a shippers association) and an ocean common carrier (or conference) in which the shipper makes a commitment to provide a certain minimum quantity of cargo or freight revenue over a fixed time period, and the ocean common carrier or conference commits to a certain rate or rate schedule as well as a defined service level (such as assured space, transit time, port rotation or similar service features). The contract may also specify provisions in the event of nonperformance on the part of either party.

Ship's Bells : Measure of time onboard ship. Starting a half past midnight (1 bell), one bell sounds for each half hour, up to 4am (8 bells) when the cycle starts over with 1 bell. The chart below gives the number of bells and the times they are rung (24hr clock).

1 bell 00:30, 04:30, 08:30, 12:30, 16:30, 20:30
2 bells 01:00, 05:00, 09:00, 13:00, 17:00, 21:00
3 bells 01:30, 05:30, 09:30, 13:30, 17:30, 21:30
4 bells 02:00, 06:00, 10:00, 14:00, 18:00, 22:00
5 bells 02:30, 06:30, 10:30, 14:30, 18:30, 22:30
6 bells 03:00, 07:00, 11:00, 15:00, 19:00, 23:00
7 bells 03:30, 07:30, 11:30, 15:30, 19:30, 23:30
8 bells 04:00, 08:00, 12:00, 16:00, 20:00, 00:00

Shipment : 1) The tender of one lot of cargo at one time from one shipper to one consignee on one bill of lading; 2) Freight tendered with a shipping document at an origin for a destination.

Shipper : 1) The person or company who is usually the supplier or owner of commodities shipped. Also called Consignor; 2) Person shipping vehicle from origin and including shipper's agents, employees and independent contractors acting on behalf of the shipper, receiver and beneficial owner; usually the person sending shipment instructions.

Shippers Association : A non-profit entity that represents the interests of a number of shippers. The main focus of shippers associations is to pool the cargo volumes of members to leverage the most favorable service contract rate levels.

Shipper's Instructions : Shipper's communication(s) to its agent and / or directly to the carrier. Instructions may be varied, e.g., specific details / clauses to be printed on the B/L, directions for cargo pickup and delivery.

Shipper's Letter of Instructions for Issuing an Air Waybill : The document required by the carrier or freight forwarders to obtain (besides the data needed) authorization to issue and sign the air waybill in the name of the shipper.

Shipper's Load & Count (SL&C) : Shipments loaded and sealed by shippers and not checked or verified by the carriers.

Shipping Instructions : Bill of lading sent via EDI or fax from the shipper.

Shipping Order : Shipper's instructions to carrier for forwarding goods; usually the triplicate copy of the bill of lading.

Short Ton (ST) : A unit of measure equal to 2,000 pounds.

Shortline : Typically, a Class III railroad, or any railroad with less than 100 miles of mainline track. There is no official or legal definition.

Shrink Wrap : Polyethylene or similar substance heat-treated and shrunk into an envelope around several units, thereby securing them as a single pack for presentation or to secure units on a pallet.

Shunting : Another term for switching. On the HLS shunting is the sorting of cars, typically in yards and passenger terminals, while switching is the pickup and / or delivery of cars at industrial parks and sidings.

SICC : An abbreviation for - Standard Industrial Classification Code. A standard numerical code used by the U.S. Government to classify products and services.

Side Loader : A lift truck fitted with lifting attachments operating to one side for handling containers.

Signal Aspect : The appearance of a fixed signal conveying an indication as viewed from the direction of an approaching train; or, the appearance of a cab signal conveying an indication as viewed by an observer in the engine control compartment. Usually consists of several single color or multicolored lights arranged in a specific pattern.

Signal Block : A length of track with defined limits on which train movements are governed by block signals, block-limit signals, cab signals or verbal block indication.

Signal Indication : The information conveyed by the aspect of a signal.

Signaling - Absolute Block : A block which must not be occupied by more than one train.

Signaling - Automatic Block Signal System (ABS) : A block signal system in which the use of each block is governed by an automatic block signal, cab signal or both.

Signaling - Centralized Traffic Control (CTC) : A method of train control whereby dispatching and movement of trains, and the operation of switches and interlocking appliances, is monitored controlled from a central location. A CTC center usually encompasses multiple interlockings, maintains communications links to all trains and significant wayside locations, and contains a master board showing the status of all tracks, signals and switches in the controlled territory. See also Signaling - Traffic Control System.

Signaling - Distant Signal : A fixed signal used to govern the approach to a home signal.

Signaling - Fixed Signal : A signal of fixed location affecting the movement of a train.

Signaling - Home Signal : A fixed signal governing the entrance to an interlocking. Signals are set at Stop unless a clear route through the interlocking is programmed by the dispatcher.

Signaling - Intermediate Signal or Block Signal : A fixed signal, or hand signal in the absence of a fixed signal, at the entrance of a block to protect entry into that block and govern the use of the block. These signals are not located at interlockings or control points. The signal indication progressively changes to Clear once a train has left the block.

Signaling - Manual Block Signal System (MBS) : A block signal system in which the use of each block is governed by a manual block signal, or by written or verbal authority.

Signaling - Multi-Aspect Signals : Allows for a combination of colors or aspects to be displayed.

Signaling - Traffic Control System (TCS) : A block signal system in which train movements are authorized by block signals, cab signals or both, for trains moving in either direction.

Signaling - Wayside Signal : A device displaying signal indications located alongside or above the track. Can be either pole mounted or affixed to structures above the track.

SITC : An abbreviation for - Standard International Trade Classification. A standard numeric code developed by the United Nations to classify commodities used in international trade, based on a hierarchy.

Skids : Battens, or a series of parallel runners, fitted beneath boxes or packages to raise them clear of the floor to permit easy access of forklift blades or other handling equipment.

Sleepers : Loaded containers moving within the railroad system that are not clearly identified on any internally generated reports.

Slow Order : Typically a temporary restriction in allowable operating speed over a segment of track, usually related to the condition of the track.

Spare Ratio or Out-of-Service Ratio : The excess number of vehicles in the fleet not required for peak period revenue service, divided by the total size of the fleet. Calculated separately for locomotives, coaches and cab cars. Spare equipment is required to enable revenue service to be maintained while allowing for routine and unscheduled maintenance and repair needs.

Special Trip Generators : Locations alongside or near rail stations that generate non-work trips that can be served by rail, including colleges and universities, schools, sporting facilities, recreational facilities, shopping malls and tourist attractions.

Speed - Limited Speed : For passenger trains, not exceeding 45 MPH; for freight trains, not exceeding 40 MPH.

Speed - Maximum Authorized Speed (MAS) or Normal Speed : The maximum speed limit over a section of track.

Speed - Medium Speed : Not exceeding 30 MPH

Speed - Restricted Speed : Prepared to stop within one half the range of vision, short of train obstruction, or switch improperly lined, looking out for broken rail, but not exceeding 20 miles per hour outside interlocking limits, nor 15 miles per hour within interlocking limits. Speed applies to entire movement.

Speed - Slow Speed : Not exceeding 15 MPH.

Split Pickup or Delivery : More than one pickup to one rail origin or more than one delivery from one destination facility when performing drayage for one shipment.

Spotting : Placing a vehicle where required to be loaded or unloaded.

Spreader : A piece of equipment designed to lift containers by their corner castings.

Stability : The force that holds a vessel upright or returns it to upright if keeled over. Weight in the lower hold increases stability. A vessel is stiff if it has high stability, tender if it has low stability, and sunk if it has no stability :o)

Station : A place designated in the Timetable by name. Usually accommodates the boarding and alighting of passengers.

Statute Of Limitation : A law limiting the time in which claims or suits may be instituted.

STB : An abbreviation for - Surface Transportation Board.

STCC : An abbreviation for - Standard Transportation Commodity Code; a hierarchy of 2 [general groupings], 3, 4, 5, or 7 [very specific] digit numbers that are assigned to nearly every possible commodity that can be transported. Some examples of what STCCs are used for include : the description of cargo on the shipping instructions, and identifying which rates apply to what commodities on tariffs.

Storage Charges : Charges associated with the period of time which a vehicle is held at a railroad facility beyond notification and free time.

Straddle Carrier : Mobile truck equipment with the capacity for lifting a container within its own framework.

Straight Bill of Lading : A non-negotiable bill of lading which states a specific identity to whom the goods should be delivered. See Bill of Lading.

Subsidiary : A company owned by another company that controls a majority of its stock.

Summary Bulletin Order : Bulletin Order issued periodically containing all information remaining in effect from previous Bulletin Orders.

Supply Chain : A logistical management system which integrates the sequence of activities from delivery of raw materials to the manufacturer through to delivery of the finished product to the customer into measurable components. Just in Time is a typical value-added example of supply chain management that involves a transportation company.

Surcharge : An extra or additional charge.

Surface Transportation Board : Abbreviated STB, it's the U.S. federal body which regulates interstate transportation, including mergers and acquisitions of freight railroads, and provisions used by Amtrak and commuter operators to gain access to terminals of freight railroads. This function was previously performed by the Interstate Commerce Commission (ICC).

Surtax : An additional extra tax.

Switching : Another term for shunting, it's a term typically associated with activities that occur in a railcar classification yard, or a terminal. On the HLS switching is the pickup and / or delivery of cars at industrial parks and sidings, while shunting is the sorting of cars, typically in yards and passenger terminals.

Switching District : An area within which a shipper located on one railroad has equal access to other railroads, either through a terminal, switching, or beltline railroad, or through reciprocal switching agreements among the line-haul railroads.

Switching Railroad : A railroad whose business is as a pickup and delivery service for connecting line-haul railroads. Switching railroads usually receive a flat fee per-car for their services.

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Tank Container : Any tank used for bulk transportation without a permanently affixed undercarriage which may be mounted on a chassis.

Tare Weight : The weight of packing material, or in railcar or container shipments, the weight of the empty railcar or empty container.

Tariff : A publication from a company that sets forth the charges, ticket fares, and shipping rates (and the rules governing the use of them), of that company's services. Tariffs are typically associated with transportation companies, however other businesses, such as phone companies, also publish tariffs.

Telex : Used for sending messages to outside companies. Messages are transmitted via Western Union, ITT and RCA.

Temperature Recorder : A device to record temperature in a container while cargo is en route.

Terminal Charge : A charge made for a service performed in a carrier's terminal area.

Terminal Railroad : A railroad whose business is as a pickup and delivery service for connecting line-haul railroads. Terminal railroads usually receive a flat fee per-car for their services.

TEU : An abbreviation for - Twenty foot Equivalent Unit. A unit of measure, it is typically used to show the capacity of a container ship.

Through Rate : The total rate from the point of origin to final destination.

Throughput Charge : The charge for moving a container through a container yard off or onto a ship.

Ticket Vending Machine (TVM) : Component of the fare collection system that sells the fare media to transit patrons.

Ticketing and Fare Collection : All activities associated with are collection and counting activities including supervision and clerical support. Includes printing, distributing, selling and controlling of tickets, tokens and passes; pulling and transporting vaults to counting facilities; counting and auditing of fare collection; and, providing security for the fare collection process.

Timetable : A printed booklet which contains schedules, and special instructions which affect the movement of trains.

TIR : An abbreviation for - Transport Internationaux par la Route. Road transport operating agreement among European governments and the United States for the international movement of cargo by road. Display of the TIR carnet allows sealed containerloads to cross national frontiers without inspection.

TOFC : An abbreviation for - Trailer On Flat Car. The movement of a highway trailer on a railroad flatcar. Also known as Piggyback.

Ton Mile : 1) A unit used in comparing freight earnings or expenses; 2) The amount earned from the cost of hauling a ton of freight one mile. 3) The movement of a ton of freight one mile.

Tonnage : Generally refers to freight handled.

Total Return To Stockholders : Stock-price change plus reinvested dividends expressed as a percentage of the purchase price of the stock.

Track Car : Equipment, other than trains, operated on track for inspection or maintenance.

Track Class : A designation used by the Federal Railroad Administration to characterize the quality and condition of track, based on track geometry and the type of track structure, which governs the allowable speed over the track and the level of maintenance that must be performed on the track. The requirements are set forth in 49CFR213. The relationship between Track Class and maximum allowable train speed is as follows :

Over track that meets
all of the requirements
prescribed in 49CFR213 for
The maximum allowable
operating speed for
freight trains is
The maximum allowable
operating speed for
passenger trains is
Excepted Track 10 mphnot allowed
Class 1 Track 10 mph 15 mph
Class 2 Track 25 mph 30 mph
Class 3 Track 40 mph 60 mph
Class 4 Track 60 mph 80 mph
Class 5 Track 80 mph 90 mph
Class 6 Track Please see
for details
on maximum
freight train
speeds on
Class 6-9 track
110 mph
Class 7 Track125 mph
Class 8 Track160 mph
Class 9 Track200 mph

Track Miles : The number of tracks per one-mile segment of right-of-way (ROW). This, for a heavy rail system, a one-mile segment of ROW with three sets of track running side by side is reported as three-track-miles. Miles of track are measured without regard to whether or not rail traffic can flow in only one direction on the track. All track is counted, including yard track (which is excluded from directional route miles).

Trackage Rights : Rights obtained by one railroad to operate its trains over another railroad's tracks.

Tractor : Unit of highway motive power used to pull one or more trailers / containers.

Traffic : Persons and property carried by transport lines.

Traffic Density : The number of trains in a given time period (usually one hour) over a section of track.

Trailer : A freight vehicle with undercarriage, wheels or mounted on chassis used for highway or rail transportation.

Trainset : Passenger cars (comprising one or more locomotives with coaches or a set of multiple unit vehicles) joined to operate as a single train.

Transport : To move traffic from one place to another.

Transportation : The movement of traffic between points.

Transportation Bond : Allows foreign merchandise arriving at one port to be transported in bond through the U.S. to be exported from another port, without paying duty.

Trucker Interchange : A contract between a railroad and a drayman allowing for the removal of a rail-controlled vehicle from a railroad's facility for a shipment delivery or pickup.

Turnaround : The time it takes between the arrival of a vessel / truck / train / aircraft and its departure. Typically refers to an endpoint of a route instead of an intermediate point.

Two Way Pallet : A pallet so designed that the forks of a fork lift truck can be inserted from two sides only.

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UFC : An abbreviation for - Uniform Freight Classification; a system which classifies freight by category.

Ullage : The space not filled with liquid in a drum or tank.

Unclaimed Freight : Freight that has not been called for or picked up by the consignee or owner.

Undercharge : To charge less than the proper amount.

Uniform Bill of Lading : A form of the bill of lading prescribed by the Surface Transportation Board.

Unit Load : Packages loaded on a pallet, in a crate, or any other way that enables them to be handled at one time as a unit.

Unit Train : 1) Any single commodity freight train operating directly between two points, typically the shipper's and receiver's sidings; 2) A freight train of a specified number of railcars, perhaps 100 or more, which remain as a unit, cycling back and forth between the same two points; loaded in one direction, empty in the other. A second pair of points might be added to allow the train to carry a load for part of the return trip.

Unitization : 1) The consolidation of a quantity of individual items into one large shipping unit for easier handling; 2) Loading one or more large items of cargo onto a single piece of equipment, such as a pallet.

Unloading : Removal of a shipment from a vehicle to a platform or warehouse.

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Validation : Authentication of a Bill of Lading, and when the B/L becomes effective.

Vanpool : A voluntary commuter ride sharing arrangement, using vans with a seating capacity greater than seven persons (including the driver), which provides transportation to a group of individuals traveling directly from their homes to their regular places of work within the same geographical area, and in which the commuter/driver does not receive compensation beyond reimbursement for his or her costs of providing the service.

Variable Cost : Costs that either vary directly with the level of activity within a short time, or that vary because of price shifts. Examples include costs of haulage rights fees, fuel costs, and short-term equipment leases. For business analysis, all costs are either defined as variable or fixed. For a business to break even, all fixed costs must be covered. To make a profit, all variable costs must be recovered.

Vehicle : A railroad-owned or railroad-controlled, or a privately owned or controlled trailer, container (with or without chassis), flat rack (with or without chassis), tank container (with or without chassis), or chassis.

Viz. : An abbreviation for the Latin term - Videlicet (Namely). Used in tariffs to specify commodities.

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War Risk : Insurance coverage for loss of goods resulting from any act of war.

Warehouse : A place for the reception, delivery, consolidation, distribution, and storage of goods / cargo.

Warehousing : The storing of goods / cargo in a warehouse.

Waybill (WB) : A waybill, abbreviated WB, is a document prepared by a transportation line at the point of a shipment; shows the point of the origin, destination, route, consignor, consignee, description of shipment and amount charged for the transportation service. It is forwarded with the shipment or sent by mail to the agent at the transfer point or waybill destination. Unlike a bill of lading, a waybill is NOT a document of title.

WB : An abbreviation for - Waybill.

Weight Cargo : A cargo on which the transportation charge is assessed on the basis of weight.

Weight or Measurement (WORM) : Abbreviated WORM; the basis for assessing freight charges. The rate charged under WORM will be whichever produces the highest revenue between the weight of the shipment and the measure of the shipment.

Weights and Measures :

Measurement Ton............................40 cubic feet
Net Ton, or Short Ton...................2,000 pounds
Gross Ton / Long Ton....................2,240 pounds
Metric Ton / Kilo Ton.................2,204.6 pounds
Cubic Meter............................35.314 cubic feet

WORM : An abbreviation for - Weight or Measurement.

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Yard : A system of tracks, branching from a common track, used for the making up, and breaking apart, of trains, and the sorting and / or storing of railroad cars. A yard can be comprised of two or more specialized yards that operate together as a single unit.

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Zulu Time : Another name for Greenwich Mean Time. GMT / ZT is used on shipping contracts, and some tariffs, when a shipment either needs to be delivered, or is guaranteed to be delivered, by a certain time.

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