You might remember the TV commercial: A single locomotive pulling doublestacked containers through a pastoral landscape, a logjam of trucks and autos on the adjacent roadway, everything moving uncharacteristically slow, but the message conveyed with undeniable clarity: Trains move goods more efficiently than trucks.

That same scenario is played out every day in countless locations: A mile-and-a-half-long train carrying more than 200 trailers and containers, making 60 mph or better across the wide open spaces, out-performing truckers on the nearby interstate who are moving freight trailers one, two, maybe three at a time. Or a throng of rush-hour motorists, six lanes wide, inching forward at a stop-and-go crawl in suburban Southern California. They can only watch as other commuters whisk by on a train that’s L.A.-bound at close to 90 mph.

Read the complete story at Railway Age.