Rail freight forwarding is continuously challenged by rival industries, which persistently manage to come up with innovative solutions to make their shipping offers as appealing as possible. In order to stay ahead of the game, rail operators should strive to welcome a future-oriented mindset marked by resilience and market responsiveness. After doing some research, we’re predicting that rail transport will change in 5 key ways – read all about these possible scenarios in our newest article:

Digitalization will gain ground

As we’ve written before, we firmly believe that digitalization is the future of rail shipping. At MMV Rail Romania we’ve already set an internalized computer system into place, which helps us with managing the distribution of staff and wagons. We also track the activity and attendance of staff members through a computerized monitoring system and offer tracking and monitoring services of shipments for our clients. We are always looking into new ways that can help drive innovation and growth in our company and are looking forward to having event more such digitalized technological advancements that support efficient workflow.

Automation can take over

Since the trucking industry is on track to integrating driverless vehicles into the freight transportation process, there’s no reason whatsoever why the rail sector shouldn’t follow suit. Adding driverless locomotives to everyday rail freight forwarding procedures is an exciting prospect that both rail operators and customers will greatly appreciate. Positive train control systems enable shipments to not only be monitored and tracked, but to also to be controlled remotely. Similarly, trip optimizer systems give operators the opportunity to optimize fuel consumption. The technology for these features already exists, all that remains is to incorporate them into daily operations.

Life cycles of assets can get shortened

Locomotives and wagons are built to last which, generally speaking, should be a great thing. While trucks have an average lifecycle of 3-4 years, locomotives can function for up to 30 years, while railcars are engineered to last up to 50 years. The downside of this is that both of these require regular maintenance and these assets don’t actually get better in time. New technology cannot be integrated into them at a later time, which is why it’s quite probable that locomotives and wagons will be designed in the future to have 10-15 year lifespans, in order to continuously take advantage of the newest developments that will help optimize rail shipping operations.

The usage of assets will get optimized

Besides shortening the life cycles of assets, the way the wagons, cars, locomotives and shipping yards are used can also do with a bit of a boost. Instead of waiting around for an entire shipment to be filled, more frequent and smaller shipments should be considered in response to the future’s supply chain needs. This, of course, should be offered whilst maximizing the assets available to rail operators. Smaller shipments have the advantage of offering various types of services more frequently and with a higher reliability.

Collaborative efforts will become the norm

Moving large amounts of cargo on long distances is definitely the greatest advantage of rail freight forwarding. But the fact that it lacks the option to offer door-to-door shipping services is quite a loss. By joining forces with other means of transport like, for example, the trucking industry, both parties can offer optimal packages to clients, while mutually enjoying the benefits that the other party of the partnership provides. This way they can showcase their true potential in the thing they excel in and leave their lackluster side to the other company involved. This efficient means of transportation is often referred to as intermodal transport and will surely be a key player in the way that cargo is shipped in the not-too-distant future.

As rail operators, we believe in embracing new technologies and in setting futuristic goals in order to meet and exceed our clients’ expectations. Contact the MMV Rail Romania team and find out how we can help you succeed in your transportation journey!