The Inception of R&R Rigs
Beaumont, TX, was the site of the emergency relief site that was set up to help out local residents and workers that had been devastated by Hurricane Ike. Rick Daniels joined the catering company LA Grill in assisting with the set up, take down, and running of the cooking site at their location in the middle of a Bingo hall parking lot. With no water, electricity, propane, or gas, Rick was the project manager in charge of material acquisition, site maintenance and clean-up, and equipment maintenance. Rick was also in charge of keeping the site’s busy crew performing tasks throughout the day that would provide clean cooking pots and pans, enough propane for the burners, and enough gas in the generators to cook up to 10,000 meals a day at lunch and dinner.
This cooking/catering operation utilized a large cooking trailer and many portable pots for cooking hot meals. The food arrived on refrigerated semi’s that parked around the cooking site and kept the food cold until it was ready to be served. Food was packaged in bags, and the bags were placed in boiling pots and then boiled until they reached the right temperature to be served. Then the bagged food was transported via an electric hoist to the end of the cooking line and dumped out on a drop table. The food was then put into cambros to keep the food hot until it could be served to local residents and disaster relief workers in clam shells (styrofoam containers).
While running the site, maintenancing the equipment, acquiring propane, gasoline, and other materials for the cooking/catering site, Rick had his eye on the cooking trailer that was used to boil the bagged food. Because he is always looking to improve systems and structures to make them more efficient and durable, he came back from Beaumont, TX, with an idea for a cooking trailer that would cook more food, cook the food faster, and be made out of trailer material that would be more durable. He got his chance to “build his theory” when he was contracted by an international company to build his boiling unit.
The first unit he built had 4 large boiling pots and a smaller boiling pot that could be used to boil rice. The boiling pots had the capability to cook 100 cases of food an hour, easily cooking food for up to 10,000 people a day. The boiling pot system was specially designed with a double-walled pot system to bring the water to a boil quickly and then hold that temperature throughout the cooking process, efficiently using the 2, 100-gallon propane tanks so that they did not have to be refilled as often. Rick installed 2 electric hoists on the trailer so that both cooking lines could cook and deliver food at the same time. The most important aspect of this trailer is that it can “stand alone” at the emergency relief site with an onboard generator, an onboard water tank with a water pump, sink, and reservoir tank, an onboard gasoline tank, 2, 100-gallon propane tanks, and an electrical system that can either work off of the generator or work off of shore power (once the electricity is restored). So, this trailer would be able to go into a totally devastated area (like Beaumont, TX, after Hurricane Ike), set up with water, electricity, gas, and propane, and cook food for people until destroyed utilities could be restored.
Upon completion of Rick Daniels’ invention of a disaster relief boiling trailer, the goal became to design and build custom cooking trailers as well as offer repair and maintenance services for existing cooking trailers. He accomplished that goal by restoring, maintenancing, and cleaning 3 cooking trailers and 2 smokers after his return from Beaumont, TX. Rick also completely renovated a 28′ mobile kitchen for the same international company for which he built his first Disaster Relief Boiling Unit. Rick Daniels with R&R Construction Services’ sister company – R&R Rigs – is now in the process of building another disaster relief cooking trailer for North America’s largest environmental services company. This company is handling parts of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill clean-up and waste disposal and will be using the cooking trailer to feed approximately 2,500 employees. Stay tuned to this blog to follow the construction of R&R Construction Services’ newest cooking/catering trailer project.