The Charleston, Roanoke & Eastern Railway is a bridge route connecting the coal and chemical rich Charleston, WV, area with other major rail lines in the Blue Ridge and Piedmont areas of Virginia and beyond. Prinicipal connections with Norfolk Southern, Conrail and CSX Transportation in the Charleston area provide coal, chemical, and general merchandise tonnage. Most of this traffic moves to and from Norfolk Southern connections in Roanoke and Danville, VA.
With most traffic being that of Norfolk Southern, the railroad is operated as the CR&E Division of NS but still officially maintains its independence. CSX maintains trackage rights to move coal from the Nicholas, Fayette & Greenbrier (a joint CSX and Conrail operation) to southeastern destinations. Run-through traffic from Conrail can also be seen moving over the CR&E.