Shipper Mistrust of Rail Use: First Stated Preference Carrier Choice Survey for the Quebec City - Windsor Corridor
The Quebec City-Windsor corridor is the busiest and most important trade and transportation corridor in Canada. The transportation sector is the second largest contributor to greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in the country. Governments around the world, including Canada, are considering increased mode share by rail as a way to reduce transportation emissions. To understand whether freight mode shift is a realistic means to reduce transportation emissions, an analytical model is needed that can predict the effect of government policy on mode split. This paper presents the findings of the first such model developed for the Quebec City-Windsor Corridor. The model itself is a stated preference carrier choice model of shippers in this busy corridor. The model was developed using the results of a stated preference survey undertaken in the fall of 2005. The survey was designed explicitly to evaluate shipper preferences for the carriage of intercity consignments, and particularly their preferences for carriers that contract the services of rail companies to carry these shipments via rail. The results of the study show that shippers are very mistrustful of using rail to move their consignments and suggests that increasing rails share of freight faces tremendous challenges.