Synthetic urine becomes a dangerous trend
VISALIA, Calif. (KFSN) -- A popular product that's selling out all over the South Valley is helping people beat drug tests and causing many businesses to worry about safety on the job.
It's a dangerous trend that is making employers nervous. Not all drug testing companies perform the extra tests needed to tell if a urine sample is real or fake.
PIV Enterprises in Visalia makes a product called "Magnum" which is synthetic urine. The product along with other products like "Urine Luck" and "Clear Stream" are sold online and at local smoke shops. It claims to help people get a clean urine test.
Small business owner Tom Flint first heard about the product from a customer. He's concerned because he randomly drug tests his employees once a month.
Tom Flint said, "I 'm concerned my employees could be on prescription drugs and relapsed on narcotics or whatever and getting by my random test program."
Employees at Suburban Pipe & Steel operate heavy machinery. Flint says an intoxicated employee would provide an unsafe work environment. Flint decided to take action and had an employee use synthetic urine and get it tested, using a local drug testing service.
Flint said, "So they came back with the results right away and... he passed!"
Flint was shocked, but officials with Tulare Regional Medical Center's Toxicology lab say synthetic urine is becoming more common.
Sharon Fong said, "Its' a concern for everybody because it's a way of making it look like you're not using drugs when you are."
Here's how it works: Simply use the microwave or a warming pack to heat up the yellow liquid. If a person is being supervised during a drug test, tubing is provided to try and give the illusion that the sample is coming from the body.
Fong said, "The agency that's doing the test is doing dip sticks or rapid tests and they're getting a result immediately. Normally those will pass those tests and show they're clean and have no drugs in their system"
Lab director Sharon Fong says their lab has caught many synthetic urine samples because the facility performs more chemical tests than a normal drug testing service.
Action News reached out to some of the companies who make synthetic urine. One did not have a listed phone number. The other did not have someone available to talk to us.
The business owner we talked to hopes lawmakers will look at this product seriously and make it illegal.
local, jessica peres
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