Trip ton-miles is a measure of a single waterway's contribution to the whole waterway system. Trip ton-miles are computed by identifying every commercial cargo-carrying vessel that has plied a particular inland waterway and summing the products of the tons times the total trip-miles for each vessel trip. "Trip-miles" is the total distance from origin to destination. For example, a barge carrying 1200 tons of wheat might only travel 30 miles on the Illinois River but its total trip to New Orleans might be 1000 miles. This trip would contribute 1,200,000 trip ton-miles to the Illinois River. Small rivers often contribute to the traffic on larger rivers.


Domestic Traffic for Selected U.S. Inland Waterways in 2002
(Millions of Short Tons, Billions of Ton-miles1 and Change from 2001)
Trip2
Length Tons Ton-Miles Ton-Miles
Waterway (miles) 2002 % 2002 % 2002 %

Atlantic Coast
  Atlantic Intracoastal Waterway, VA-FL 793 1.9 -26.1 0.1 -9.3 0.2 -24.8
  Intracoastal Wtwy, Jacksonville to Miami, FL 349 .5 -43.2 ** -27.9 ** -12.2
 
Gulf Coast
  Bayou Teche, LA 107 1.6 -9.3 0.1 -4.3 0.6 -1.7
  Black Warrior and Tombigbee Rivers, AL 449 19.0 0.5 3.5 9.0 6.6 0.3
  Chocolate Bayou, TX 13 2.9 -14.0 ** -14.1 0.8 -8.5
  Gulf Intracoastal Waterway, TX-FL 1,109 107.7 -4.0 17.4 -3.3 52.1 -6.0
  GIWW: Morgan City-Port Allen Route, LA 64 20.8 -10.6 1.3 -10.6 19.6 -9.6
  Petit Anse, Tigre, Carlin bayous, LA 16 2.2 -27.8 ** -30.8 2.6 -29.8
  Tennessee-Tombigbee Waterway, AL and MS 234 6.2 -8.1 1.2 -10.2 3.6 -12.4
 
Mississippi River System
  Allegheny River, PA 72 2.8 -4.6 ** -13.5 1.1 -18.6
  Atchafalaya River, LA 121 10.7 -7.3 0.7 -7.0 7.2 0.2
  Big Sandy River, KY and WV 27 25.1 3.7 0.2 3.4 6.6 -11.9
  Cumberland River, KY and TN 381 22.6 -2.5 2.6 7.2 9.7 -7.6
  Green and Barren Rivers, KY 109 10.4 33.9 0.7 43.2 5.5 42.3
  Illinois Waterway, IL 357 43.0 -1.0 8.6 -1.1 43.7 -0.2
  Kanawha River, WV 91 19.2 -13.2 1.3 -13.2 8.6 -18.5
  McClellan-Kerr Arkansas R. Nav. Sys., AR/OK 462 11.9 6.2 2.5 4.8 6.9 4.6
  Mississippi River Mpls, MN to Mouth of Passes 1,814 316.2 -0.1 182.3 1.3 237.6 0.2
    Minneapolis, MN to Mouth of Missouri River 663 84.1 6.7 16.9 17.4 94.9 7.5
    Mouth of Missouri R. to Mouth of Ohio R. 195 121.5 2.0 20.5 4.1 128.3 4.2
    Mouth of Ohio River up to Baton Rouge, LA 720 198.3 -1.2 121.9 -1.0 210.7 0.3
    Baton Rouge up to New Orleans, LA3 130 222.4 1.1 17.4 0.5 195.2 0.4
    New Orleans, LA to Mouth of Passes3 106 114.8 -1.6 5.5 2.4 66.7 -5.2
  Missouri R. (MO, KS, NE & IA) to Sioux City, IA 732 8.3 -15.1 0.4 -27.6 1.1 -28.2
  Monongahela River, PA and WV 129 38.2 0.4 1.4 6.2 9.8 27.0
  Ohio River, PA, WV, OH, KY, IN, and IL 981 243.2 0.3 57.5 -2.1 128.3 -3.0
  Ouachita and Black rivers, AR and LA 332 1.4 -11.5 0.2 -10.2 0.7 6.0
  Red River, LA 212 3.7 0.6 0.4 26.1 2.5 9.5
  Tennessee River, TN, KY, MS and AL 652 43.9 -8.3 6.7 2.8 25.2 -5.1
 
Pacific Coast
  Columbia River System, OR, WA, and ID3 596 16.5 -18.5 2.3 -23.3 1.8 -21.6
    Columbia River and Willamette River
      below Vancouver, WA and Portland, OR3 113 15.9 -19.4 0.6 -27.4 1.8 -22.3
    Vancouver, WA to The Dalles, OR 85 8.0 -18.4 0.6 -19.3 1.8 -22.2
    The Dalles Dam to McNary Lock and Dam 100 7.3 -18.2 0.6 -21.1 1.8 -21.5
    Above McNary L & D to Kennewick, WA 39 5.1 -24.5 0.2 -23.4 1.4 -25.4
    Snake River (WA and ID) to Lewiston, ID 141 4.3 -24.0 0.3 -26.5 1.3 -25.2
    Willamette River above Portland, OR 118 1.6 1.4 ** -40.3 0.1 19.5

1. ** denotes ton-miles of less than 50 million.
2. Internal and intraport tons times total distance from origin to destination.
3. Includes coastwise entrance channel miles for tons and ton-miles but not for trip ton-miles.

Comments or Questions Contact: WCSC (504) 862-1424 or (504) 862-1404
Waterborne Commerce Statistics Center, New Orleans, LA