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Railinc Web Site Delivers Rail Industry Reference Files (IRFs) to Desktop

June 9, 2010
Railinc has announced the launch of its Industry Reference Files integrated Web site (IRFiTM), providing rail industry participants—including railroads, third-party logistics companies, and shippers with access to critical rail industry reference file information via the Web. The site offers direct views and functionality to download select customized extracts of data contained within five key Industry Reference Files (IRFs), eliminating the need for printed publications and allowing users to purchase only the information they need. Access is available at www.railinc.com/irfi.

IRFs currently on the IRFi site are the Centralized Station Master (CSM), Junction Interchange File, Mark Register (MARK), Route File (ROUTE), and Standard Transportation Commodity Code (STCC) files. Direct views and details of each of these files, including a map view for the CSM and Junction Interchange files, are available with one-click access. A subscription is currently required to access the files, but free look-ups are available for first-level information.

“This Web service represents a significant improvement over the old publication model,” said Jerry Vaughn, Railinc product manager. “It expedites the process of searching for information in the Industry Reference Files and assures users that the information is up-to-date. This is a major step toward providing all rail industry participants with timely access to reference data.”

Until now, rail industry reference files were delivered as a printed annual publication, electronic PDFs, or text files with monthly or quarterly supplements that included all IRF data. Although PDFs and text files are still available, IRFi subscribers can designate the real-time databases they need without having to purchase information they don’t need. Each module subscription provides companies with unlimited access throughout the year. It also allows companies to export data directly to their desktop, where they can manipulate it to extract the information they need. A Customer Information File (CIF) module will be added to the Web site in the future.

IRFs are the foundation for all railroad industry communications that ensure data consistency and referential integrity. Railinc Corp. maintains the only industry-accepted version of these files, which are critical to the daily operation of railroads and related businesses. Subscribers may register and access IRFi at www.railinc.com/irfi.

Railinc is the railroad industry’s resource for IT and information services. The company deploys data that helps railroads, rail equipment owners, and other industry participants manage their businesses more effectively and efficiently. Railinc is the largest, single source of real-time interline rail data for the North American railroad system. Located in Cary, NC, Railinc is a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Association of American Railroads. For more information, visit www.railinc.com.