North Carolina Oversize / Overweight Regulations

What is considered as "Oversized Load" in North Carolina?

Dimensions Width: 8'6" (8' other roads) Height: 13'6"Semi Trailer Length: 53' (non-designated Hwys: 48') Maximum Length: 110' (non-designated Hwys: 60') Legal Overhang: Front/Rear: 10'

What is considered as "Overweight Load" in North Carolina?

Weights: Single Axle: 25,000 lb. Tandem axle: 50,000 lb. Tridem: 60,000 lb. Max legal Gross Weight: 80,000

North Carolina Oversize / Overweight Permits

North Carolina Permit Department Contact Information

888-574-6683

Fax: 919-733-4740

8:00 AM - 4:00 PM Eastern

http://www.ncdot.gov/

North Carolina Pilot Cars / Escorts

For permitted loads more than 12 feet wide on:

       Two-lane/two-way traffic highways     One front escort required

       Multi-lane highways                                Rear escort is required or as determined and stated on the permit document by issuing agent.

Loads exceeding 110 feet in length:

      Rear escort required 

Note: Escort vehicle requirements for 16-foot-wide mobile/modular homes are different from those for other escort vehicles.

Overall length 150 feet or greater.                                                                           Front and rear escort required

Weight greater than 149,999 pounds:                                                                     Front escort required

Permitted loads exceeding 14 feet in width on two-lane/ two-way roads:       Front and rear escort required

For permitted loads exceeding 14 feet 5 inches in height:                                  Front escort equipped with height pole indicator.

Additional escorts may be required for any vehicle or vehicle combination with individual consideration of weight, width, length, height, weather, geographical location or route of travel as determined by issuing agent.

Pilot cars (escort vehicles) may be:
A truck of not less than a one-quarter-ton rated load capacity but not more than 17,000 pounds GVWR
A passenger vehicle of not less than 2,000 pounds gross weight.

Escort Operators
All escort vehicle operators are required to obtain an approved escort certification prior to performing the duties of an oversize/overweight load escort vehicle operator in North Carolina.



North Carolina Axle Regulations

Maximum Legal Weights

Note: Gross weight is determined by the extreme axle measurement (Federal Bridge Law)

Single Axle                     20,000 lb.

Tandem Axle                 34,000 lb.

Gross Vehicle Weight  80,000 lb.

Maximum Permit Weight Allowed

Single Trip Permit

Maximum permit weight allowed is determined by the number of load supporting axles; allowable bridge structure weights.

Axle weights:

Steer axle                            20,000 lbs.
Single axle                          25,000 lbs.
Tandem axles                     50,000 lbs.
Tridem axles                       60,000 lbs.
4 or more axle grouping    68,000 lbs.

Gross Weights:

5 axles 94,500 lbs.* (*112,000 pounds with minimum 51-foot wheelbase) (single trip permit - one specific route)
6 axles 108,000 lbs.* (*120,000 pounds with minimum 51-foot wheelbase) (single trip permit - one specific route)
7 axles 122,000 lbs.* (*132,000 pounds with minimum 51-foot wheelbase) (single trip permit - one specific route)

Annual Permit

Minimum 51-foot wheelbase, (One item) vehicle combinations can qualify for movement up to 90,000 pounds. (Travel not authorized on posted roads or posted bridges.) Over 90,000 pounds, route specific (exact origin, detailed route and destination required).

Gross Weights:

5, 6 or 7 axles 90,000 lbs. (minimum 51-foot wheelbase) (annual permit – not to cross posted roads or posted bridges)
5 axles 94,500 lbs.* (*112,000 pounds with minimum 51-foot wheelbase) (annual permit - up to 10 specific routes) (PF-2A)
6 axles 108,000 lbs.* (*120,000 pounds with minimum 51-foot wheelbase) (annual permit - one specific route) (PF-2A)
7 axles 122,000 lbs.* (*132,000 pounds with minimum 51-foot wheelbase) (annual permit - one specific route) (PF-2A)


North Carolina Trip and Fuel (IRP / IFTA) Permits

Temporary Trip Permit

If not proportionally registered a trip permit must be obtained before entering any other International Registration Plan (IRP) member jurisdiction and carried in the cab of the vehicle for which issued or the vehicle may be subject to full registration in that jurisdiction.

With the trip permit, and provided proper operating authority is held in the member jurisdiction, the vehicle is entitled to be operated intrastate as well as interstate during the period allowed under the permit.

Exception: Trip permit operation is limited to interstate movement in Arizona, Iowa, Nebraska and North Dakota.

The fee for a North Carolina Temporary Trip Permit is $15 for 10 days.

Fuel Permit

Carriers that do not have an IFTA license must have a fuel permit for each state when operating interstate. Drivers must have this permit prior to entry into North Carolina. Valid in North Carolina only.

Fuel permits are valid for 3 days from the date of issue, and must be carried in the vehicle at all times while you're in North Carolina.

Permits are necessary for carriers based in another jurisdiction when traveling into North Carolina who are not properly registered for North Carolina. This permit allows interstate and intrastate movements.

Seventy two hour permits are vehicle specific. The permit cost is determined by permit type(s) selected. The state of North Carolina does not provide refunds.

North Carolina Overweight / Oversize Fines

The state of NC states that if the vehicle's weight exceeds the amount allowable, the officer may detain the vehicle until the overload has been removed.

Failure to permit a vehicle to be weighed or to remove an overload is a misdemeanor. 

Any person violating any of the provisions of this part shall be responsible for an infraction and may be subject to a fine not less than one hundred dollars ($100.00) and not more than five hundred dollars ($500.00) (2005‐ 282, s. 2.). All permit violations are assessed civil penalties due and payable at the time of inspection.

Overweight Axle Groups

Axle Group                                                                Fine

0  - 2000 lb.                                                               $0.02 per pound

20001 - 5000 lb.                                                       $0.04 per pound

Over 5,000 lb.                                                           $0.10 per pound

Overweight Single or Tandem Axle

Weight                                                                       Fine

0  - 2000 lb.                                                               $0.02 per pound

20001 - 5000 lb.                                                       $0.04 per pound

Over 5,000 lb.                                                           $0.10 per pound



Running Hours and Holiday Restrictions

Warning Lights:
Red brake lights must be displayed on any rear overhang.
Headlights on during highway movement.
Red or amber light at rear of overhang, visible for 200' or more.

"Oversized Load" Banner

Vehicle combination: the banner length totaling 7 feet wide by 18 inches high. Banner may be displayed in two sections to allow for visibility of registration plates/decals.

Black letters 10 inches high with 1.5-inch brush strokes bearing the legend “Oversize Load” or “Wide Load” on a yellow background.

Banner is to be displayed on the front and rear bumpers of any vehicle combination permitted for more than 10 feet wide. (May be two separate banners totaling a length of 7 feet to provide for display of registration plates/decals).

Note: The banner displayed on front and rear of a mobile/modular home combination and on top of a 16-foot-wide mobile/modular home escort must bear the legend “WIDE ____ FT. LOAD” or “OVERSIZE ____ FT. LOAD” to properly identify the nominal width of the unit in transport.

Flag Requirements

Flags are required on all loads wider that 8' 6". All flags are to be red or orange, 18" square.

Placement: At each corner and at the widest point of over width or as specified on the permit.


Flags, Lights and Banners

Running Hours

Permitted vehicles may travel Monday through Saturday, sunrise to sunset.

No Sunday travel without specific permit.

Holiday travel prohibited for overweight (exceeding 112,000 lb.) or any over-dimentions from noon the weekday before until noon on the weekday after the following holidays: New Year's Day, Memorial Day, Independence day, Labor Day, Thanksgiving Day, and Christmas Day.

North Carolina Tire Regulations

All tires must be in good condition and have at least 2/32 inch of tread depth remaining. Tire depth shall be measured by a tread depth gauge which shall be of a type calibrated in thirty-seconds of an inch. Readings shall be taken in two adjacent tread grooves of the tire around the circumference of the tire.

Pneumatic tires are required, exception by permit only.

Tire chains of reasonable proportions upon any vehicle are permitted when required for safety because of snow, ice or other conditions tending to cause a vehicle to slide or skid. It is also permissible to use safety, regular, and snow tires with studs which project beyond the tread of the traction surface of the tire not more than one sixteenth of an inch when compressed.

A vehicle shall be disapproved if:

(1) Any tire has cuts or snags that expose the cords.

(2) Any tire has a visible bump, bulge, or knot apparently related to tread or sidewall separation or partial failure of the tire structure including bead area.

North Carolina Annual Permits

Dimensions: 

  • Length: 105'
  • Width: 15′
  • Height: No set limits – determined by route

Cost: 

Annual Permit - $ 100.00 per vehicle

Time, it takes to receive: 1 week

Mailing method: mail

Commodity specific? Truck specific

Need to obtain a route? No

North Carolina Road Conditions

The N.C. Department of Transportation's Work Zone Safety Program aims to significantly reduce the number of work zone injuries and fatalities in North Carolina by:

Everyone is responsible for making work zones work better and safer.

Stay alert and be aware of your surroundings.

Be prepared to take action quickly, and expect the unexpected.

Be patient and avoid passing other vehicles.

If you are merging into another lane, do not to wait until the last minute.

If a flagger stops you, be patient and realize the inconvenience is temporary.

North Carolina Manufactured Houses and Mobile homes

Single Trip Permit Required for:

12-foot-wide units (width at bottom of unit) with overhang exceeding 3 inch gutter edge. 

14-foot-wide units with roof overhang not to exceed a total of 12 inches that are not operating by authority of an annual permit. 

16-foot-wide units that are not operating by authority of an annual permit. Issuance of permits for movement of 16-foot-wide unit(s) in specific geographical areas within the state will require a route survey to be completed. 

Units exceeding the legal height of 13 feet 6 inches. 

For all other mobile home movement not covered by authority outlined on an annual permit. 

Additional information required: 

Serial number of mobile home (last five digits). 

ICC registration number is required when crossing state line(s). 

Route of Travel - Must include exact origin, detailed route and exact destination. County/state road numbers and routes are required. 

Fee: $12 - $48 (state fee) 

Valid: 10 calendar days for one single trip 

Maximum Limits:

Width: 15 feet maximum (mobile home may be permitted up to 16 feet) 

Length: 105 feet maximum for mobile homes/total combination 

Height: Maximum determined by vertical clearance along authorized route of travel Overweight: One item route specific (exact origin, detailed route and destination)

Annual (Blanket) Permits may be issued for:

Movement of 12-foot-wide units that do not exceed the legal height of 13 feet 6 inches. 

14-foot-wide units with roof overhang not to exceed a total measurement of 12 inches or 16' wide units with maximum 3” gutter edge moving from point of specified manufacturer to a specific retail sales center, may include up to a maximum of 30 specific routes of travel. 

14-foot-wide units with roof overhang not to exceed a total measurement of 12 inches moving within a 25-mile radius from a specific dealer sales lot (permit co-issued) to customer’s homesite, another dealer or out of state.

Fee: $200 per vehicle (mobile homes) 

Valid: One year from effective date 

Maximum Limits:

Overweight: Minimum 51-foot wheelbase, (One item) vehicle combinations can qualify for movement up to 90,000 pounds. Over 90,000 pounds, route specific (exact origin, detailed route and destination).


Oversize / Overweight Regulations By State