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Mobile Food Vendor Vehicle Requirements

Vehicles that contain cooking equipment that produce smoke or grease-laden vapors for the purpose of preparing and serving food to the public. Vehicles intended for private recreation shall not be considered mobile food preparation vehicles.

Mobile food preparation vehicles that are equipped with appliances that produce smoke or grease-laden vapors shall comply with these requirements.

Mobile Food Vendor Operational Permit Application

Permit Required

Operational permits are issued by the Hilton Head Island Fire Rescue Bureau of Fire Prevention.

Exhaust Hood

Cooking equipment that produces grease-laden vapors shall be provided with a kitchen exhaust hood in accordance with Section 607.

Section 607
A Type I hood shall be installed at or above all commercial cooking appliances and domestic cooking appliances used for commercial purposes that produce grease vapors.

Exhaust system cleaning
The exhaust system, including hood, grease-removal devices, fans, ducts and other appurtenances, shall be inspected and cleaned a minimum of every six months. Increased cleaning may be required based on frequency and type of cooking operation.

Fire Protection for Cooking Equipment

Cooking equipment shall be protected by an automatic fire extinguishing system.

Fire protection systems and devices
Fire protection systems and devices shall be maintained and in operative condition at all times and shall be replaced or repaired where defective. Fire protection systems for cooking equipment are required to be inspected every six months.

Fire Extinguisher

Cooking equipment involving solid fuels or vegetable or animal oils and fats shall be protected by a Class K-rated portable extinguisher. A 2A10BC extinguisher is also required in each vehicle. Both extinguishers will need to be inspected annually by a certified technician.

Cooking Oil Storage Containers

Cooking oil storage containers within mobile food preparation vehicles shall have a maximum aggregate volume not more than 120 gallons (454 L), and shall be stored in such a way as to not be toppled or damaged during transport.

Tank Venting

Normal and emergency venting shall be provided for cooking oil storage tanks.

LP-Gas Systems

Where LP-gas systems provide fuel for cooking appliances, such systems shall comply with the following:

  • Maximum aggregate volume
    The maximum aggregate capacity of LP-gas containers transported on the vehicle and used to fuel cooking appliances only shall not exceed 200 pounds (91 kg) propane capacity.

  • Protection of container
    LP-gas containers installed on the vehicle shall be securely mounted and restrained to prevent movement.

  • LP-gas container construction
    LP-gas containers shall be manufactured in compliance with the requirements of NFPA 58 (Liquefied Petroleum Gas Code).

  • Protection of system piping
    LP-gas system piping, including valves and fittings, shall be adequately protected to prevent tampering, impact damage, and damage from vibration.

  • LP-gas alarms
    A listed LP-gas alarm shall be installed within the vehicle in the vicinity of LP-gas system components in accordance with the manufacturer's instructions.

CNG Systems

Where CNG systems provide fuel for cooking appliances, such systems shall comply as follows:

  • CNG containers supplying only cooking fuel
    CNG containers installed solely to provide fuel for cooking purposes shall be in accordance with:

  • Maximum aggregate volume
    The maximum aggregate capacity of CNG containers transported on the vehicle shall not exceed 1,300 pounds (590 kg) water capacity.

  • Protection of container
    CNG containers shall be securely mounted and restrained to prevent movement. Containers shall not be installed in locations subject to a direct vehicle impact.

  • CNG container construction
    CNG containers shall be an NGV-2 cylinder.

  • CNG containers supplying transportation and cooking fuel
    Where CNG containers and systems are used to supply fuel for cooking purposes in addition to being used for transportation fuel, the installation shall be in accordance with NFPA 52.

  • Protection of system piping
    CNG system piping, including valves and fittings, shall be adequately protected to prevent tampering, impact damage and damage from vibration.

  • Methane alarms
    A listed methane gas alarm shall be installed within the vehicle in accordance with manufacturer's instructions.

All code references come from the adopted 2018 International Fire Code.

Please contact the Hilton Head Island Bureau of Fire Prevention at 843–682-5100 with any questions or information requests.

Mobile Food Vendor Vehicle Requirements in pdf format

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