Coal boom fires QR to 176m freight record

<p>QR has set a new haulage record of 176m tonnes for its coal and freight division in 2004&#4705.</p> <p>The QR national result is an 8% improvement on the previous year’s tonnage and is largely down to growing coal volumes. </p> <p>The operator hauled a record 157m tonnes of coal and this marked the ninth consecutive year of growth in coal volumes.</p> <p>QR chief executive Bob Scheuber said that further growth in coal demand is expected.</p> <p>"We expect to further expand our coal tonnages here in Queensland," Mr Scheuber said.</p> <p>"This will, of course, be boosted by our coal haulage operations here in the Hunter Valley, which have recently commenced."</p> <p>The drought affected QR’s bulk freight results but additional minerals transport partially offset this decrease, Mr Scheuber said.</p> <p>It was the first full year of operation for new haulage contracts with Birla copper concentrate and Taragoola limestone.</p> <p>Industry preference for rail over road transport has also boosted haulage results for box freight, he said.</p> <p>"We continued to grow our containerised freight business interstate during the past year, and are now running 10 services a week between Brisbane and Melbourne," Mr Scheuber said.</p> <br />