6/14/2013 03:00:00 PM

Free CFD Inspections for Food Trucks, Lawsuit Advances to Court

The good news: Chicago food trucks having a difficult time navigating the city’s requirements can get a free assessment from the Chicago Fire Department before undergoing a Mobile Vehicle Assessment (required for any food truck equipped with a propane or natural gas system, fire suppression hood and/or a generator). According to Mobile Cuisine, the free assessments are by appointment only and can be made by calling 312-744-6249 or online.

The better news: A lawsuit filed last November by the Schnitzel King and Cupcakes for Courage attempts to override the operators laws enforced by the city. These laws require food trucks to install a GPS system on board that ensures they do not park within 200 feet of a brick-and-mortar restaurant. The suit claims that the regulations violate the Illinois Constitution and do not allow the trucks to reasonably operate their businesses.

Yesterday, Cook County judge Peter A. Flynn reviewed the case. According to the Sun-Times, Flynn said, “It is not clear...how the city proposes to protect against the misuse of the data (collected).” Basically, the government can monitor the trucks when they are parked during service, but they can also track them during the owners' personal time. Flynn advanced the case, dismissing one argument that trucks be treated the same as restaurants, and it will have its day in court in September.

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