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Michigan Oversize / Overweight Regulations

What is considered as "Oversized Load" in Michigan?

Dimensions: Width: 8' 6" (8' non-designated hwys) Height: 13' 6" Length: Truck-Semi-trailer 65' Legal Overhang: Front: 3', Rear: Any length up to legal max vehicle length (length greater that 4' must have12' red require flag (days) and red light/lantern (night time).

What is considered as "Overweight Load" in Michigan?

Weights: Single Axle: 20,000 lb. Tandem axle: 34,000 b. Max Gross Weight: 80,000 lb.

Michigan Oversize / Overweight Permits

Michigan Permit Department Contact Information


Fax: 517-373-2209

8:00 AM - 5:00 PM Eastern

Michigan Pilot Cars / Escorts

Escort Vehicles – An escort vehicle must be a passenger car or pickup truck with at least one flashing or rotating light on top of the cab.

Escort Vehicles are required for:

The load dimensions are:

  • Over 12' to 14' wide – 1 escort
  • Over 14' wide – 2 escorts (front and rear)
  • 90' to 100' long – 1 rear escort
  • Over 100' – 2 escorts (front and rear)
  • Over 14'5" high with high pole – 1 front escort
  • Over 15' high with high pole – 2 escorts (front and rear)
  • Overhang over 15' – 1 rear escort

Michigan Axle Regulations

Maximum load limits may depend on

  1. Type of highway
  2. The number of axles and the distance (spacing) between the axles or axle assemblies
  3. The gross vehicle weight of the vehicle or combination of vehicles
  4. Tire width (as published by the manufacturer)

Depending on the conditions listed, your vehicle may be subject to the maximums found under the bridge formula or the normal loading standards.

Bridge Gross Weight Formula

The bridge formula applies to vehicles operating on interstate highways and specially designated highways that:

  • do not exceed 80,000 pounds gross weight;
  • do not exceed the maximum allowed under the formula.

Normal Loading

Space Between Axles                  Vehicles exceeding 80,000 lb.              Vehicles 80,000 lb or less

9 ft. or more                                    18,000 lb                                                   20,000 lb.

3.5 ft. but less than 9 ft.                13.000 lb.                                                 13,000 lb.

Tandem                                            16,000 lb.                                                 34,000 lb.

Maximum per Wheel                      700 lb. per in. of tire width

Note: Seasonal weight limits may be imposed.

Complete details at:

Michigan Trip and Fuel (IRP / IFTA) Permits

Trip Permits

Michigan Operators Driving Out of State

Michigan operators eligible for apportioned registration must have a trip permit to enter any IRP jurisdiction unless the Michigan vehicle has an apportioned registration with the jurisdiction listed on the cab card.

In most jurisdictions, as long as you meet the member jurisdiction's requirements, your vehicle can be operated intrastate and interstate for the period allowed under the trip permit.

Out of State Operators in Michigan

A 72-hour reciprocity permit is required for the power unit (truck or truck-tractor) of a truck registered in a jurisdiction not reciprocal with Michigan, a truck from a reciprocal jurisdiction but exceeding its maximum GVW while in Michigan, or a truck from an IRP jurisdiction, but without an IRP plate. The permit authorizes 72 consecutive hours of travel in or through Michigan. The fee for each permit is $20.

Fuel Permit

A Temporary Fuel permit is issued in lieu of IFTA licensing for travel within Michigan. The fee for a Temporary Michigan Fuel permit is $20 and is valid for 5 consecutive days. Permits can be obtained through a permitting service, who will charge an additional processing fee. Limit of 3 permits per calendar year.

Michigan Overweight / Oversize Fines

The statute provides that operator of a vehicle shall pay a civil fine of up to five hundred dollars ($500). If the court determines that a misload in one or more axles exists by four thousand pounds or less, the court may impose a misload fine of $200 per axle.

Overweight Fines'

Over Weight Amount:                          Fine:

Over 1000 lb.                                         $0.03 per lb.

Over 2000 lb.                                         $0.06 per lb.

Over 3000 lb.                                         $0.09 per lb.

Over 4,000 lb.                                        $0.12 per lb.                                       

Over 5,000 lb.                                        $0.15 per lb.

Over 10,000 lb.                                      $0.20 per lb.

The court may also impose a $200.00 fine per axle (not exceeding 3 axles) if there is a misload of between 1,000 to 4,000 pounds on one or more axle. A $400.00 fine per axle (not exceeding 3 axles) may be imposed if there is a misload of between 4,000 to 8,000 pounds on one or more axle.

If the driver or owner of the vehicle fails to stop or bypasses a weigh station, he/she is guilty of a misdemeanor.

Running Hours and Holiday Restrictions

Oversize Load Banners

“Oversize Load” signs required on front of vehicle and on rear of load for any over-dimensional load.

Flag Requirements

Oversize loads require red or orange flags at least 18” square, displayed at each of the four corners of the vehicle or load, and additional flags shall be displayed at the widest point on each side of the load.

Warning Lights

When rear overhang is 4′ or more, the extreme rear of the load must have a flag for daytime running, and a red light or lantern at night.

Flags, Lights and Banners

Permits are issued for daylight hours only (1/2 hour before sunrise and 1/2 hour after sunset, Monday through Friday.

Permits will not be issued for movement from 12:00 noon on the day preceding and continuing until daylight of the first day after the following holidays: New Year’s, Day Labor Day, Memorial Day, Thanksgiving Day, Independence Day, Christmas Day.

Weekend movement is permitted for loads not exceeding 10' in width, 14' high, and 90' long. This allowance is similar to other bordering state's provisions and allows weekend movement all day on Saturday, and until 3:00 p.m. on Sunday.

Mobile/modular homes are not eligible for weekend movement.

Michigan Tire Regulations

A person may operate on a highway a vehicle which has a pneumatic tire in which wire of .075 inches in diameter or less is embedded if the tire is constructed so that the percent of metal in contact with the highway does not exceed 5% of the total tire area in contact with the roadway, except that during the first 1,000 miles of use or operation of the tire the metal in contact with the highway shall not exceed 20% of the area.

Michigan state rules may make separate provision for the extreme winter snow and ice conditions of the Upper Peninsula and the northern Lower Peninsula. The rules may affect the use o studded tires, traction devices, and the amount of road wear the devices may cause to the road surface.

A vehicle weighing 10,000 pounds or more must have 4/32 in. of tread on the front wheels and 2/32 in. of tread on the rear wheels.

Michigan Frost Laws

Spring Weight Rules:


Does not allow more than 11 axle trucks to enter or exit during Spring weight restrictions.

Does not allow movements that exceed 14' in width during Spring weight restrictions.

May subtract 25-35% of the normal legal weight an axle group can haul on non interstate roads during Spring weight restrictions.

Does not allow movements that are over legal weight on any group of axles during Spring weight restrictions.

Michigan Annual Permits

Maximum Limits: 

  • Length: 150′
  • Width: 16′ (or 14′ during spring thaw restrictions)
  • Height: 15′ Shipper/driver are responsible for finding safe routes when the height exceeds 13’6″
  • Weight: depends


Oversize $30 /12 month period 

Overweight $100 /12 month period

The price of a new extended permit is pro-rated and varies based on the when it is received and the month in which it will expire.

Time, it takes to receive: Extended permits are usually issued within 15 to 21 business days from the time it is received by MDOT.

Michigan Road Conditions

Sign up for e-mail updates for Work Zone Safety through MDOT's GovDelivery e-mail system .

Focus on Driving

Preset radio stations, navigation, and climate control.

Do not reach down or behind the seat to pick up items.

Do not use any other distracting technology while driving.

Speeding in construction zones results in:
o Doubled fines
o More points on your Michigan license
o Increased auto insurance rates
o Jail and fines.

Stay alert

Give commercial trucks more room

Stay calm

Michigan Manufactured Houses and Mobile homes

A special permit to move a mobile home on Michigan state trunkline highways is not required if the dimensions do not exceed the following: 

  • 8 feet 6 inches in width 
  • 12 feet 6 inches in height 
  • 45 feet in body length 
  • 60 feet in overall length, including the towing vehicle 

Special permits will not be issued to move a mobile home or building module on Michigan state trunkline highways if the dimensions exceed the following: 

  • 16 feet in width (not including 6” eaves) 
  • 15 feet in height 
  • 80 feet in actual body length 
  • 105 feet in overall length, including the towing vehicle 

Speed Limitations

If the Posted Speed Limit is:                        Maximum Towing Speed

More than 45 mph                                         45 mph

40 to 45                                                           35 mph

Less than 40 mph                                          Posted Speed Limit

Oversize / Overweight Regulations By State