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with customers that turn into friendships

over time. This often leads to loyal, repeat

customers. After all, if they are happy

and have a good relationship, why go

anywhere else?

“One of our customers, who started with

us in 2008, has stayed on with us because

we do have such a good relationship. In

fact, the customer currently has three

operating facilities on our railroad because

of this.”

Wheeling has the flexibility many Class I

railroads do not have to give customers a

better customer service experience. For

example, Wheeling deals with a reduced

bureaucratic system, and everyone is in

one corporate office, meaning decisions

get made faster.

When working with Wheeling, customers

talk to someone in Brewster. Chastek

shared that employees at the company

are very focused, and the company

provides a good family-style atmosphere.

As proven by Chastek and Nelson,

Wheeling believes in promoting from

within, which creates company loyalty and


And many other railroads that are Class

II only offer one or two connections, and

can only offer switches for clients a couple

of times a week. With its competitive

rates, multiple connections—many to Class

I rails—and the option for clients to switch

multiple times a day, Wheeling is setting

the precedence in the industry.

To continue setting the standard in the

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industry and to grow Wheeling’s business

profile, Chastek would like to see the

infrastructure continue to expand, and a

continuing effort to diversify the commodity

base of the company.

“We want to improve the speed and capacity

of the lines. Focusing on new business is

a significant portion of our strategy going

forward: we’re looking to convert trucking

customers to rail customers.”

Nelson, when asked his hopes for the future,

provided an answer that exemplified the

company’s history and culture.

“I never want us to lose sight of providing

excellent customer service,” he said. “That

will always be the key to our success.”


November 2015



Wheeling and Lake Erie Railway