The North Dakota Public Service Commission released findings of its 2001
comprehensive rail satisfaction survey of more than 130 state grain elevator
managers. The railroads serving North Dakota earned an overall satisfaction
rating of slightly better than fair. The lowest average service marks
were given to the Burlington Northern Santa Fe, whose rating was between
poor and fair. The best ratings were given to Northern Plains Railroad,
which was ranked slightly above good.
The survey also revealed significant concern with certain rail practices,
including demurrage policies (freight delay compensation), rate levels
and general customer service.
The respondents handled nearly 60 percent of all the grain that was
shipped by North Dakota grain elevators last year. Collectively, they
transported 77 percent of their total volume by rail.