California Food Truck Ansul System

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Inkys
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2012/02/22 03:18:22 (permalink)

California Food Truck Ansul System

I'm just beginning my build (brought the truck home last weekend). One item I'm not clear about is fire suppression systems. If they are being required in parts of California, I don't know by who or when they're required. I spoke with the local planning commission. They don't do any truck inspections. HD requires the health code stuff (sinks, water, etc) but not fire. It might be some cities or counties, but I can't seem to get a straight answer on the issue.
Is anyone operating a mobile unit in California and know who requires fire suppression?
 
This seems to go along with code inspections in general. I know Washington state is pretty rigorous and requires the same building codes on trucks as brick and mortar, but as far as I can tell, there are no code inspections in California for mobile units other than the health code.
 
Does any one have different information on this?
Thanks
 
#1

14 Replies Related Threads

    mofood
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    Re:California Food Truck Ansul System 2012/02/22 11:07:16 (permalink)
    Check with local fire marshal. That is who will set this requirement.
    #2
    jenneti
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    Re:California Food Truck Ansul System 2012/02/28 16:35:14 (permalink)
    It's a HUD requirement with the fire marshall recertifying every 6 months.
    #3
    DWags541
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    Re:California Food Truck Ansul System 2012/02/28 19:07:15 (permalink)
    Only thing I know about CA rules are HD related. One that varies considerably from our local rules are the need for screens between patrons and kitchen and two windows at point of service.
    Luckily at the events I did in Cali, they weren't that hawkish about these issues and just focused on the fundamentals.
    Here in Oregon, I've always been under the impression, (for the last 6 years) that mobile kitchens exist in a kind of grey area regarding Fire Dept rules, and city building codes that would apply to brink and mortar joints.
    Of course, every place is difference.
    #4
    mofood
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    Re:California Food Truck Ansul System 2012/02/28 21:45:43 (permalink)
    I spoke with my fire Marshall, here in SLC we are required to hav fire suppression for type 1 appliances..grease and grease vapor producing cooking. I'll hav 2 burner range, 36" flat top, and 45lb fryer. Room for more to come.
    Not cheap!
    #5
    Vic Cardenas
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    Re:California Food Truck Ansul System 2012/02/28 22:20:30 (permalink)
    mofood:
    I did the same thing and called, I want to say it was the state fire marshal office. They said the same thing. But, I noticed that NO food trucks around here have an ansul system. I talked to Mark at Tastees and he was saying he's never had a problem if he's just had the K-class extinguishers.
     
    Who did you call? I'm guessing the same guy as me and whoever does the inspections is a different person and is not on the same page. Or maybe it's unified fire or a local fire dept. that is passing these trucks off? Me personally, I'm just going to buy a tagged K-class and ABC and hope that will work. I don't want to put in an ansul system if I don't have to.
    #6
    Inkys
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    Re:California Food Truck Ansul System 2012/02/29 01:39:07 (permalink)
    From what I've learned, this seems to be the bottom line:
    Liability Statement (lol...): This is my gut sense, so do your own homework
     
    + Some states have regulated truck builds to meet building code (Washington is one).
    others have not.
    + For states that have not, we fall into a grey area, and some inspectors (such as Fire Marshals) may tell you you have to have such n such. But the law requiring it applies to buildings, not vehicles.
    + Fabricators have told me I may need to INSIST that my truck is not a building when dealing with inspectors, but that should protect me from these requirements.
     
    ++ This is one of those areas, you DON'T want to ask to many questions, cuz then you have to fight your way out.
     
    + I think in time we will see more code requirements. The industry is getting a lot of attention lately, and I expect regulations to follow. I'm OK with that if it's done reasonably.
    + It might be wise to form an association that looks out for our interests in legislation.
    + New regulations may or may not be applicable to existing operations. An association could mean the difference between: You have to rewire your truck to code and add fire suppression NOW, and All New trucks need to meet electrical code and have fire suppression.  How much is that difference worth to you?
     
    + I have seen cities in my area implement their own restrictions (*see below) that appear to be motivated by brick and mortar restaurants that feel threatened. They are already established and connected with local politicians, and the "good ol boy" clubs can be very strong, so again, an industry association may be essential.
     
    + Since getting an association going is a long slow process, it seems advisable to do it before damaging regulations are on the table.
     
    * Sacramento passed regulations that almost totally ran trucks out of town. It include requirements such as no more than 20 minutes in one spot, must move at least 400 yards each time you move. Cannot revisit the same spot in an 8hr period, Cannot be within 400 yards of another mobile food facility (not sure if this includes Hot dog carts). No mobile foods at night.
     
    Most trucks just left town. I don't plan to operate in Sac, but I would have.
     
    This type of regulation seems more about protecting brick and mortar than citizens, but they have some spin to claim it's good for the city.  They would never have accomplished this type of regulation against a well represented industry.
     
    Now my viewpoint:
    I think we should pass a regulation that all brick an mortar restaurants have to close from noon - 1pm cuz it's good for the health and welfare of their workers to get some fresh air everyday... lol
    #7
    mofood
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    Re:California Food Truck Ansul System 2012/02/29 02:17:05 (permalink)
    Vic, this was in salt lake county. I do have to see this guy when i'm done to get my final permitting. I think the city won't give me my license until then.
    FYI, tastees is in WVC. i think that's where the disconnect is. I know someone who didn't license in SLC for similar reasons.

    Inkys, well put. And stress on grey areas. No one really has a feel for us trucks/trailers in towns where there are very few mobile operations.
    post edited by mofood - 2012/02/29 02:18:25
    #8
    daddywoofdawg
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    Re:California Food Truck Ansul System 2012/02/29 04:58:05 (permalink)
    I would also ask your insurance Co. about the ansul.the law may or may not but the insurer may say you need it,or pay twice as much.JM2C
    #9
    Vic Cardenas
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    Re:California Food Truck Ansul System 2012/02/29 11:36:27 (permalink)
    mofood

    Vic, this was in salt lake county. I do have to see this guy when i'm done to get my final permitting. I think the city won't give me my license until then.
    FYI, tastees is in WVC. i think that's where the disconnect is. I know someone who didn't license in SLC for similar reasons.

    Inkys, well put. And stress on grey areas. No one really has a feel for us trucks/trailers in towns where there are very few mobile operations.

    PM sent
    #10
    mofood
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    Re:California Food Truck Ansul System 2012/02/29 12:27:17 (permalink)
    Replied..and countdown
    #11
    Inkys
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    Re:California Food Truck Ansul System 2012/02/29 23:54:44 (permalink)
    Insurance is a good point.
    #12
    jack10robert
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    Re:California Food Truck Ansul System 2012/03/06 04:41:44 (permalink)
    In the Lunch Truck Industry, it’s required to install Ansul Fire Suppression System. According to the California Law, provided by the Health Department, it’s a must have Fire Suppression System. The past six years we have been installing fire systems in the lunch trucks. Currently, we are doing installation and service with more than a dozen Lunch Truck Manufacturers. The commitment is stronger than ever. 

    post edited by jack10robert - 2012/03/06 04:46:13
    #13
    Blissful Bite
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    Re:California Food Truck Ansul System 2012/03/06 20:30:36 (permalink)
    Inkys - I think an association is a good idea and worthy of it's own thread.  What's your opinion on starting an association vs. joining state/national restaurant associations?
    #14
    chefbuba
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    Re:California Food Truck Ansul System 2012/03/06 22:03:24 (permalink)
    jack10robert

    In the Lunch Truck Industry, it’s required to install Ansul Fire Suppression System. According to the California Law, provided by the Health Department, it’s a must have Fire Suppression System. The past six years we have been installing fire systems in the lunch trucks. Currently, we are doing installation and service with more than a dozen Lunch Truck Manufacturers. The commitment is stronger than ever. 

    Lucknow ain't in Indiana!
    #15
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