WASHINGTON - A life-like prosthetic penis called the Whizzinator and other products promising to help illegal drug users pass urine tests provoked U.S. lawmakers on Wednesday to take legal action with subpoenas of manufacturers.
Lawmakers objected to attempts to circumvent drug tests with products such as The Whizzinator, a fake penis that can provide a flow of clean urine “again and again, anytime, anywhere you need it!” according to the Web site www.whizzinator.com
A congressional subcommittee voted to subpoena the owner of Puck Technology of Signal Hill, Calif, the company that makes the Whizzinator. The panel also voted to subpoena the owners of Health Choice of New York City and Spectrum Labs of Cincinnati, two companies that lawmakers said also were suspected of selling products aimed at circumventing workplace drug tests.
The owners were required to provide financial and operational records by Monday and to appear at a congressional hearing on Tuesday.
“These companies seek through deception to make a buck by violating our trust and compromising our security,” said Rep. Ed Whitfield, a Kentucky Republican who chairs the House Energy and Commerce Committee’s oversight and investigations panel.
“It is a risk we simply cannot tolerate. This panel will uncover how widespread these products are and recommend the necessary steps to end their use,” Whitfield said in a statement.
Actor Tom Sizemore, who played a sergeant in the war movie “Saving Private Ryan,” was caught using the Whizzinator to try and pass drug tests, California prosecutors said in February. He was put in jail after using a similar device and failing a drug test, prosecutors said.
Drinks to flush drugs
The House committee is investigating whether federal legislation is needed to stop companies from making similar products, such as drinks that promise to flush out drug ingredients in urine.
The company officials had previously declined to testify and provided little information, a committee statement said.
Michael Fichera, owner of Health Choice, said he had told the committee he would cooperate with the investigation.
“I don’t think there’s anything wrong with the products we’re selling,” Fichera said in an interview. “We do a service. I think it’s way more positive than negative.”
He said users of his company’s products, which include drinks and capsules, must be “clean” for two to three days before using them to pass a drug test.
“We’re not beating or cheating on drug tests. We are just accelerating the cleansing time,” Fichera said.
An official at Spectrum Labs did not immediately respond to a request for comment about the congressional action. A man who answered the phone at Puck Technology said no one was available to comment.