As Vice President of Industrial Products Sales for BNSF Railway, Katie Farmer has witnessed railroad’s evolution into a 21st century transport provider for 21st century industries such as wind power. PES talks to Katie about the company’s growing influence and its ‘total transportation package’.
PES: Welcome to PES magazine. Can you explain a little about your company and outline the services you provide for the wind industry?
Katie Farmer: BNSF Railway is a freight railroad company that plays a key role in the global supply chain. We operate along a network of more than 32,000 route miles in 28 states and two Canadian provinces. But broader than that, we serve as a transportation provider for many commodities that are imported and exported through our US ports. Our focus is on using speed, agility and resourcefulness to help expand the global marketplace for goods and services.
All of this is accomplished by a team of individuals who are progressive, resourceful and approachable. We take great pride in providing an easy, relevant choice for all types of shippers in a wide variety of locations.
We’re committed to meeting the needs of this emerging market. We realize that transporting oversized wind turbine components from the factories or ports to the wind farms can be a challenge. That’s why we offer our customers a total transportation package – everything they need to ensure their components are delivered in a manner that’s cost-effective, convenient environmentally responsible and damage-free.
We have nearly a decade of experience in shipping wind turbine components. And our strength in shipping these components lies in our ability to collaborate with our customers to identify their specific challenges, and then working with them to build a transportation strategy that’s suited to their exact needs.
PES: The logistics market for wind turbines is becoming ever more competitive. What benefits does rail offer over other means of transportation?
KF: With rail, you receive a number of significant advantages:
* Availability of equipment dedicated to transporting wind components
* Higher tonnage and capacity limits
* A streamlined clearance process
* Minimal risk of damage to components – no in-transit loss or damage claims in nearly a decade of shipping wind components