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Load-less runs with only a caboose?

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Every now and then, while reading discussions or advice about RT2, or even RT3, players mention returning back for cargo hauling only a caboose. I always return with only the engine (which is rare in RT2, but still occurs), mostly to avoid taking up space on the track and possibly causing another train to yield. I can't quite understand why would someone take an extra car that does nothing. Or does it?

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Caboose can decrease the risk of break down or crash. Even an empty engine can break down although the risk is quite low.

The other issue is that this extra caboose does not slow down the train. The speed of your train is limited by the slowest train on your track, just like the volume of a cask is limited by the shortest stave. Empty trains are the fastest, it can only get stuck behind other trains, not blocking other trains, so the length isn't a problem.

Nevertheless, I think this is a minor decision to make, not affecting your profits a lot.

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