Joseph Vranich, a former spokesman for Amtrak, served on the Amtrak Reform Council from February 1998 to July 2000. He also served as president and CEO of the High Speed Rail Association and executive director of the National Association of Railroad Passengers.

Vranich has written extensively about railroad service in the Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, Baltimore Sun, Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, Chicago Tribune, and Orange County Register. Vranich's latest book is End of the Line: The Failure of Amtrak Reform and the Future of America's Passenger Trains (AEI Press, December 2004).

By Joseph Vranich

Privatization Might Save Passenger Rail

The airport shutdowns and fear of flying that followed the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks gave Amtrak a surge in ridership, especially in America's northeast corridor. The nationalized passenger railway responded by increasing capacity, the number of trains conveying passengers, and was forced to require more reservations from customers. It will not be enough to save Amtrak's passenger rail service, but privatization might be. … more