Fire Regulations for Outside Festival Booths

Printer-friendly version (PDF) |

Table of Contents:

Permits and Approval
Cooking Booth Construction
Cooking Equipment
Vendor Booth Construction and Location
Electrical Power
Charcoal Cooking
Deep Fat Frying/Flambe/Open Flame Cooking
Fire Extinguishers
Fire Safety Tips


This standard shall apply to individual tents, temporary structures or membrane structures less than 200 square feet in area and canopies less than 400 square feet in area used as outdoor carnival and fair booths.


Permits and approval may be required by the authority having jurisdiction.


Cooking Booths are booths where food is prepared by a heating or cooking process such as but not limited to grilling, frying, barbecuing, flambeing, deep fat frying, baking, warming, and boiling.

Vendor Booths include all booths except cooking booths.


  1. All fabrics or membranes covering cooking booths must be certified flame retardant or treated with a fire retardant paint or spray.

  2. Decorative materials must be inherently fire resistive, or must be treated with a fire-retardant paint or spray.

  3. Flooring material used within a cooking booth and under cooking equipment, shall be non-combustible or fire-retardant treated.
  4. EXCEPTION: 3/8" plywood or similar material.

    Note: for items 1,2 and 3, a flame test may be required for non-certified flame retardant or treated materials. A field flame test will required a sample of material measuring 2 inches by 12 inches.

  5. Each cooking booth shall have at least one exit way, minimum 3 feet wide by 6'8" in height (booth frame shall not intersect exit path).

  6. Cooking booths shall have a minimum clearance of 10 feet on at least two sides with clearance of at least 10 feet from any vendor booth.

  7. A 10-food wide separation shall be provided for every 10 connected cooking booths.


  1. All interior cooking equipment shall be of an approved type and open flame cooking shall be a minimum of 18 inches from booth back/side drop materials.

  2. Coleman stoves or equivalent may be used only with approved fuel.
    • Do not add liquid fuel to stoves in booth.
    • Maximum of two gallons of fuel capacity on each appliance-no additional storage inside.
    • Do not use Kerosene or gasoline. Storage of fuel is NOT allowed in the booth

  3. Butane or Propane equipment:
    • Cooking appliances must have an on-off valve and far enough away to be shut off in case of fire.
    • Shut-off valves must be provided at each fuel source.
    • Hoses must be of type approved for use with this equipment.
    • Tank must be protected from damage and secured in an upright position.
    • No storage of extra butane or propane tanks in booth.
    • Tanks not in use must be turned OFF.
    • Maximum quantity for use inside booths is ten gallons.
    • Responsible shall have soapy water in a container for testing connections.
    • Unused fuel cylinders shall be stored in a secured position. Max. Outside storage-10 gallons.

Note: Specialized-cooking equipment, used outside of the booth may have larger tanks, when approved by the authority having jurisdiction.


  1. Each vendor booth shall have at least one exit way, mininum 3 feet wide by 6'8" in height (booth frame shall not intersect exit path).

  2. Vendor booths shall have a minimum clearance of 20 feet on at least one side with clearance of at least 10 feet from any cooking booth.

  3. A 10-foot wide separation shall be provided for every 200 -lineal foot of vendor booths.


  1. Generators shall be placed in approved locations for festival use.

  2. Refueling of generators is prohibited during event hours. No extra fuel shall be stored during event hours.

  3. During approved refueling times, no smoking or open flames are allowed within 25 feet.

  4. Extension cords shall be of grounded type and approved for exterior use.


  1. Use only an electric starter or commercial sold lighter fluid.

  2. Charcoal cooking and storage of lighter fluid is prohibited inside booths.

  3. Charcoal cooking shall be located a minimum of 10 feet away from booths and in areas away from public access.

  4. Charcoal cooking shall be 10 feet away from combustible structures and parked vehicles.

  5. Coals shall be disposed in metal containers approved by the authority having jurisdiction.


  1. Deep fat frying is defined as any cooking operation or process whereby the product floats or is submerged in hot oil during the cooking process.

  2. Deep fat frying, flambe or open flame cooking operations shall be located outside the booth and no closer than 18 inches away from any combustible material.

  3. The cook area shall not be accessible by the general public.

  4. Deep fat frying equipment must be equipped with a temperature regulating device or other method of regulating temperatures approved by the authority having jurisdiction.

  5. Separation shall be maintained with a minimum of 3 feet clearance between deep fat frying and flambe or open flame cooking.


  1. Each cooking booth shall be equipped with a fire extinguisher with a minumum rating of 2A:10B:C. Booths equipped with a deep fat fryer shall have a Class K extinguisher.

  2. For vendor booths, the maximum travel distance to a fire extinguisher with a minimum rating of 2A:10B:C shall not exceed 75 feet.

  3. Fire extinguishers shall be mounted adjacent to the exit and must be visible and accessible.

  4. Fire extinguishers shall be serviced annually and be tagged accordingly.

  5. Each generator shall be provided with a fire extinguisher with a minimum 40B:C rating. The extinguisher shall be located near the generator and accessible at all times.


Note: The event coordinator is responsible for compliance of these regulations.

  1. All compressed gas cylinders shall be secured in an upright position

  2. Clean all cooking areas regularly to prevent the build-up of grease.


  1. Know where the fire extinguisher is and how to use it.

  2. DO NOT leave cooking unattended.

  3. DO NOT wear loose fitting clothing while cooking.

  4. Remove trash accumulation regularly.

  5. Keep combustibles away from heat sources.

  6. In case of emergency, DIAL 9-1-1.