Amtrak sleeper cars, sleeping pill and sleep 5E have all been banned from passenger service for five years by the Federal Aviation Administration.
The Federal Aviation Authority announced on Thursday that the sleeping pills and sleep-inducing sleep aids would no longer be allowed in passenger service on the National Railroad Passenger Corporation’s (NRCP) passenger rail system.
The NRCP is a part of Amtrak, which operates the Amtrak service.
Amtrak is a privately owned company.
Amtrak has said the sleeping pill ban has no impact on the safety of the service, but is a “wake-up call” to other large companies that are operating on the same rails.
“Amtrak’s safety is our first priority and we take this matter very seriously,” Amtrak CEO Thomas L. Prendergast said in a statement.
“We take safety very seriously and are closely monitoring our network to ensure that it meets our highest standards,” he added.
After the ban was announced, Amtrak posted on Twitter: “Amtrak is a private company and we don’t comment on the security of any system.”
In September, the Federal Railroad Administration banned the use of sleep-promoting sleep aids like norepinephrine autoinjectors in passenger trains, which can lead to the overdose of sleeping pills.
Amtrak trains are equipped with emergency exit buttons that would trigger a warning if someone tries to enter the train without having a valid ticket.
The NRCA has said that if passengers don’t use the emergency exit button, the emergency alarm could wake the train, which could lead to fatal accidents.
The ban on sleeping pills has caused an uproar on social media and in some quarters.
One Twitter user wrote: “I hate sleeping pills so much that Amtrak has banned them.
Why do I need to worry about sleeping pills if they’re not dangerous??”
Another wrote: “Sleep pills are dangerous and the airlines don’t even have the resources to investigate them.
This is a wake-up message to other companies that have the same risks.”
Another said: I think we need to stop sleeping pills.”
Amanda Burdick, a spokesperson for the NRCC, told The Associated Press that the airline will continue to monitor its rail system, and that it’s “working closely with Amtrak to ensure the safety and security of our customers.””
Amanda will continue working with the NPC and the FAA to ensure this issue is resolved in a timely manner and to ensure we do not further affect the safety, security, or availability of our passengers,” she said.