v2.4.0.6
Document And Entity Information (USD $)
12 Months Ended
Dec. 31, 2011
Jan. 31, 2012
Jun. 30, 2011
Document And Entity Information [Abstract]      
Document Type 10-K    
Amendment Flag false    
Document Period End Date Dec. 31, 2011    
Entity Registrant Name NORFOLK SOUTHERN CORP    
Entity Central Index Key 0000702165    
Entity Current Reporting Status Yes    
Entity Voluntary Filers No    
Current Fiscal Year End Date --12-31    
Document Fiscal Year Focus 2011    
Document Fiscal Period Focus FY    
Entity Filer Category Large Accelerated Filer    
Entity Well-known Seasoned Issuer Yes    
Entity Public Float     $ 25,988,654,887
Entity Common Stock, Shares Outstanding   330,141,306