New Metro-North Head Promises Improvements

Metro-North's new president, Joseph Giulietti, wants to reassure Connecticut commuters that change is coming as he takes over an organization that has seen its share of problems.

The New Haven line has been a big trouble spot, from the derailment in Bridgeport to a massive power outage and issues with late trains.

"People should be able to believe that they're getting on a train and getting safely to their destination," Giulietti said in an exclusive interview with NBC Connecticut.

Giulietti said he wants to wait for the results of several federal investigations before he makes any connections among the incidents.

He did admit that Metro-North has too heavily emphaized on-time performance and said the railroad has not given enough attention to safety.

"Safety wasn't the number one, and in this industry safety has to be your number one," said Giulietti.

He said that may mean trains may have to run a bit slower.

As a result of issues with the railraod, frustration among commuters has reached new heights. The biggest complaint from riders: a lack of communication. That's something Giulietti plans to address head on.

"When we have these public meetings, I will be at the meetings," he said. "I have done this before. I will continue to do that."

Giulietti ssaid Metro-North needs to be able to face its critics and most importantly, listen.

Last week, he met with Gov. Dannel Malloy, who requested a 100-day plan from Giulietti on he works to turn the railroad around. Giulietti would not elaborate on the details of that plan.

"It is being formulated, it is being worked on and I'm being asked to get it in as soon as possible to the State of Connecticut," he said.

He'll testify before the General Assembly's Transportation Committee in Hartford on Thursday.

Giulietti, a Hamden native, worked most recently at the South Florida Regional Transportation Authority. He became Metro-North's president just three weeks ago following the resignation of Howard Permut.

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