Serving high quality and delicious food to customers must always be a top priority for food trucks. But in addition to providing great products, mobile food vendors must also ensure the safety of consumers.
Propane tanks are convenient and economical, which make them the preferred fuel source of food trucks. Even though they are considered stable and safe, propane tanks still possess a certain degree of danger, just like any type of fuel.
The Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) offers an informative webinar to guide food truck operators on propane cylinder safety. Watch the video at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pcTAdYrD3Eo
Thank you PHMSA (www.phmsa.dot.gov) for providing such a great resource!
As a quick guide, here are the things food truck operators should keep in mind regarding propane tank safety:
- Understand the markings on your propane cylinder. These may include symbols that show what type of tank you have, the original manufacture date, and the re-certification date.
- Know if your tanks need to be re-certified and understand the different kinds of cylinder re-qualification.
- The age of the tank can affect its performance. Ensure that your cylinders are not beyond their certified number of years.
- Be familiar to what propane smells like. Propane tank retailers offer scratch pads that can help your employees know the distinct odor of the fuel in case of leakages.
- Flammable liquids like cleaning agents or gasoline should not be near a gas-burning equipment. Fumes from these can get ignited by the pilot burner.
- Know where the gas lines are located inside your truck so that they do not get damage when moving kitchen appliance. Also, check the condition of connections to see if there are any leaks.
- Never attempt to fix a leak yourself. If you suspect a leak, call your supplier immediately! Any appliance connected to problematic cylinder must not be used until the leak is resolved.
Contact your propane tank retailer for any concern you have regarding your tanks. When each vendor does their part in providing a safe and exceptional experience to customers, it benefits not just their business but also the food truck community and industry as whole.
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