Fire Safety Regulations in Commercial Kitchen Hood Cleaning

Fire Safety Regulations in Commercial Kitchen Hood Cleaning

Fire safety is crucial for reducing the risk of potential fires that could cause injury, death or severe property damage in commercial kitchens. The grease, heat and smoke produced in large kitchens facilitate the need for compliance with National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) 96 regulations.

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Understanding NFPA 96 Regulations

The NFPA is an organization dedicated to preventing death, personal injury, property damage and financial loss due to fire-related incidents. As part of its numerous regulations, NFPA 96 focuses on taking the necessary precautions for fire safety in commercial kitchens.

What Is NFPA 96?

NFPA 96 is a set of cleanliness standards for exhaust systems in commercial kitchens. Cooking operations in these settings often cause vaporized grease to solidify in the exhaust system over time, creating a potential fire hazard. NFPA provides safety regulations that businesses must follow to protect themselves from fire-related incidents and prevent penalties for noncompliance.

Requirements for Kitchen Hood Cleaning

The NFPA kitchen hood cleaning requirements state that only trained and certified professionals can clean restaurant hoods and exhaust systems. They also outline how often the cleaning should occur and the areas that must be cleaned to prevent fires.

Standards and Frequency

NFPA 96 compliance standards include NFPA 11.6.1, which states, “Upon inspection, if the exhaust system is found to be contaminated with deposits from grease-laden vapors, the contaminated portions of the exhaust system shall be cleaned by a properly trained, qualified and certified company or person(s) acceptable to the authority having jurisdiction.”

In addition, according to NFPA 11.6.2, “Hoods, grease removal devices, fans, ducts and other appurtenances shall be cleaned to remove combustible contaminants prior to surfaces becoming heavily contaminated with grease or oily sludge.”

Concerning the frequency of cleaning, the NFPA guidelines have a mandated schedule based on the cooking volume of systems serving various operations, including:

  • Monthly: Solid fuel cooking operations.
  • Quarterly: High-volume cooking operations, including 24-hour cooking, wok or charbroiling cooking.
  • Semi-annually: Moderate-volume cooking operations.
  • Annually: Low-volume cooking operations, including day camps, churches, seasonal businesses and senior centers.

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The Consequences of Noncompliance

Businesses may be charged with substantial fines for noncompliance, ranging from hundreds to thousands of dollars, depending on the local regulations. Additionally, if a fire results from failure to comply with NFPA 96 standards, the business may face legal liability and insurance companies may reject their claim.

Steps to Ensure NFPA 96 Compliance

Some ways to ensure your commercial kitchen is NFPA 96 compliant include:

1. Hire Professionals

Following NFPA 96 standards, you must hire a trained and certified professional to perform the cleaning. Professionals are well-versed in the cleaning guidelines and have the skills to provide the highest level of cleaning using the right equipment and techniques.

2. Perform Regular Maintenance

Regular maintenance helps your equipment remain in good condition with reduced risk of fire hazards. This service is also necessary to keep your business NFPA 96 compliant.

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3. Document Your Compliance Efforts

Working with a professional for your kitchen hood cleaning needs can ensure that you have documentation of NFPA 96 compliance, which will be valuable in the case of an insurance claim or inspection.

ExhaustCLEAN collaborates with local authority having jurisdiction (AHJ) reporting systems, such as Compliance Engine and LIV, that provide a digital platform for collecting and viewing compliance efforts. This makes the documentation process easier and more convenient.

Hire ExhaustCLEAN Certified Professionals

ExhaustCLEAN has a team of certified professionals skilled at conducting intensive commercial kitchen hood cleaning. We also provide various maintenance solutions and thoroughly document your system’s condition to ensure it complies with NFPA 96 standards and prevent fire safety penalties for noncompliance. Contact us today for expert solutions.

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