Railroad Firing Back at Entergy in Coal Dispute

APRIL 25, 2006 - Posted at 8:25 a.m. CST

LITTLE ROCK, AR - Union Pacific Railroad denies claims in a lawsuit that deliberately slowed coal shipments needed by Entergy Arkansas.

Entergy is suing the railroad over the shipments.

Union Pacific says it did all it could to keep coal moving to Entergy and other customers last year despite bad weather and damaged tracks, even to the point of turning down new business as the company tried to catch up with delayed coal shipments.

The company responded Monday through a spokesman to claims made in the suit filed April 12 by Entergy.  The railroad has not yet filed its response to the lawsuit.

The electric utility said the production cutbacks at its two major coal-fired plants forced it to increase electricity purchases on the open market, at greater cost.

(Copyright 2006 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)