Railinc collects, manages, distributes and analyzes a lot of rail data. For example, in our Event Repository database, we have logged at any given time, nearly 1 billion movement data points ("events") that document the time a train arrives to or departs from a location.

Moving and managing that much data requires Railinc to use state-of-the-art technologies and infrastructure solutions so that we can meet the evolving needs of our customers. Just recently, Railinc completed work on a very large, multi-year project to migrate all of our systems and applications from a mainframe server environment to a more flexible and dynamic midrange environment. With tremendous credit to our IT teams, this effort has already produced significant positive results for the company and will improve its cost structure, which in turn, improves the value our customers will receive for years to come.

But this project also inadvertently affected the process used to generate the Railinc Short Line and Regional Railroad Index. The "Short Line Index" is published monthly on our website and in Railway Age Magazine. It reports on a monthly basis the number of carloads by commodity type that originated on short line and regional railroads compared to the same month in the previous year.

Generating data for the index is a complex process that involves collecting data from more than 500 sources, creating algorithms for building railcar trips using that disparate data, matching waybills to the derived trips and finally counting the railcars carrying the specified commodities. The process is both artful and scientific.

Unfortunately, for the February, March, April and May 2015 indexes, the movement of the reporting process from one technology platform to another resulted in different data sets used than those needed for the comparison. This led to errors in those editions of the index. Railinc data scientists have since corrected this reporting problem. As a result, we are restating data in the Short Line Index from February 2015 to May 2015. You can find the updated indexes at www.railinc.com/rportal/railinc-indexes. Railinc apologizes for this error and has already improved its process for publishing the data.

The company also has notified the editors of Railway Age, who were very gracious in working with us.

While the reporting error is unfortunate, there is an upside to improving the technology used in creating the index. In 2009, when Railinc launched the new Umler system on a new technology platform, there were also changes that led to improved data quality and richer, more accurate data analyses. We fully expect the same from this technology upgrade.

Please contact Railinc Corporate Communications if you have any questions about the Short Line Index.

—Railinc Corporate Communications