Virginia Oversize / Overweight Regulations

What is considered as "Oversized Load" in Virginia?

Dimensions: Width: 8' 6" Height: 13' 6 Semi-trailer: 48' Truck-trailer combo: 53'

What is considered as "Overweight Load" in Virginia?

Weights: Single Axle: 20,000 lb. Tandem axle: 34,000 lb. Tri-axle: 54,000 lb. Max Gross Weight: Based on formula - Legal weight allowed based on axle spacing..

Virginia Oversize / Overweight Permits

Virginia Permit Department Contact Information

804-786-2787

Fax: 804-367-0063

7:30 AM - 4:00 PM Eastern

http://www.dmvnow.com

Virginia Pilot Cars / Escorts

All escort vehicle operators are required to be certified prior to performing the duties of an oversize/overweight load escort vehicle operator in Virginia. General guidelines as to when escorts are required follows; this listing is not all inclusive: 

1.      One front and one rear escort is required on non interstate routes when the permitted load exceeds 12 ft. in width. 

2.      One rear escort is required on interstate routes when the permitted load exceeds 12 feet in width. 

3.      Two front and one rear escorts are required on non interstate routes when the permitted load exceeds 14 feet in width. 

4.      One front and one rear escort is required on interstate routes when the permitted load exceeds 14 feet in width. 

5.      Two front and two rear escorts are required on non interstate routes when the permitted load exceeds 16 feet in width. 

6.      One front and two rear escorts are required on interstate routes when the permitted load exceeds 16 feet in width. 

7.      One front escort is required when an off-centered load exceeds three feet six inches on the passenger side of the vehicle configuration. 

8.      One front escort and one rear escort is required when an off-centered load exceeds five feet on the passenger side of the vehicle configuration. 

9.      One front escort equipped with height pole, adjusted three inches above the load height, is required on all routes when the permitted load exceeds 14 feet five inches in height. 

10. One rear escort is required on noninterstate routes when the permitted load exceeds 85 feet in length. 

11. One rear escort is required on interstate routes when the permitted load exceeds 120 feet in length. 

12. One front and one rear escort is required on all routes when the permitted load exceeds 150 feet in length. 

13. One front escort is required on all routes when the permitted load has a front overhang that exceeds 10 feet (measured from the bumper). 

14. One rear escort is required on all routes when the permitted load has a rear overhang that exceeds 15 feet (measured from the bumper). 

15. Permit loads that exceed 18 feet wide or 200 feet long will be handled on a case-by-case basis. 

Escort requirements are subject to change with individual consideration of weight, width, length, height, geographical location, or route of travel as determined by the issuing agent. 

What is an escort vehicle?

An escort vehicle is a vehicle used as a forward or rear warning device to the general public, required for certain over-dimensional or over weight loads, also referred to as flag or pilot cars.

What type of vehicle is required to perform the duties of an escort vehicle driver?

The vehicle used for escort duty should be either (1) a truck or SUV of not less than one-quarter ton-rated load capacity but not more than 17,000 pounds gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) or (2) a passenger vehicle of not less than 2,000 pounds gross weight.

An escort vehicle shall not resemble nor be confused with law enforcement or safety assistance vehicles.

The escort vehicle should be clearly marked with the appropriate signage and should have the escort vehicle company sign on both sides of the escort vehicle.

The escort vehicle must be in compliance with all state and local registration requirements.

The escort vehicle are not to be over-dimensional or overweight while being used in escort functions.

An escort vehicle is not permitted to pull a trailer of any kind while performing escort functions.

An escort vehicle must have an unobstructed view through the rear window.

The escort vehicle must be equipped with a two-way radio communications system to maintain communications with the load, other escort vehicles and utility vehicles.

Virginia Axle Regulations

Note, Virginia appears to have the most detailed and extensive set of truck weight regulations. However, the basic federal highway weight regulations are consistent with other states.

Maximum Legal Weight Allowed

  • Any one axle 20,000 lb.
  • Tandem Axles (more than 40 inches but no more than 96 inches spacing between axle centers) 34,000 lb.
  • Single Unit (2 Axle) 40,000 lb.
  • Single Unit (3 Axle) 54,000 lb.
  • Tractor-Semitrailer (3 Axle) 60,000 lb.
  • Tractor-Semitrailer (4 Axle) 74,000 lb.
  • Tractor-Semitrailer (5 Axle) 80,000 lb.
  • Tractor-Semitrailer (6 Axle) 80,000 lb.
  • Tractor-Twin Trailers (5 or more Axles) 80,000 lb.
  • Other Combinations (5 or more Axles) 80,000 lb.
  • Per inch of tire width in contact with road surface 650 lb.

The weights listed above are the maximum weight limits allowed. No vehicle can travel on Virginia highways with a single axle weight in excess of 20,000 lb., tandem axle weight in excess of 34,000 lb., or a gross weight in excess of 80,000 lb.

Axle and Gross Weight Limits – Virginia Code §46.2-1126

The maximum gross weight is determined by the number of axles on a vehicle and the distance between the first axle (steering) and extreme rear axle. The following examples give the maximum allowable gross weight of each vehicle.

5 axle vehicle with 51 feet of axle spacing is allowed a maximum gross weight of 80,000 lb.

5 axle vehicle with 47 feet of axle spacing is allowed a maximum gross weight of 77,500 lb.

3 axle vehicle with 20 feet of axle spacing is allowed a maximum gross weight of 51,000 lb.

3 axle vehicle with 17 feet of axle spacing is allowed a maximum gross weight of 48,500 lb.

Vehicle may not exceed a single axle weight of 20,000 lb. or a tandem axle weight of 34,000 lb.

Maximum Permit Weight Allowed

The Code of Virginia allows the following oversize/overweight permits to be issued specifically for the vehicles or load listed in this section

Maximum Weights for Vehicles Hauling Coal and Liquids Produced from Gas or Oil Wells and Maximum Weights for Vehicles Hauling Gravel, Sand, Asphalt and Crushed Stone


 

Virginia Trip and Fuel (IRP / IFTA) Permits

The Virginia DMV offers 10 day trip permits authorizing travel in Virginia for any vehicle that is subject to the International Registration Plan (IRP) or the International Fuel Tax Agreement (IFTA) but is not registered under these programs.

Trip and Fuel Permits Fees

IRP: $15.00 for Virginia trip permit (plus service fees if you apply through a permit service).

IFTA: $20.00 for Virginia trip permit (plus service fees if you apply through a permit service).

Combination IRP/IFTA: $35.00 for combination Virginia IRP and IFTA trip permit (plus service fees if you apply through a permit service).

Required Information

Trip permits are vehicle-specific. The following information is required:

  • Applicant’s full name, business address, and phone number
  • Federal Employer Identification Number or Social Security Number (if an individual)
  • Lessor name, if the vehicle is leased
  • License plate number / state of license / expiration date of license
  • Year/make/model of vehicle
  • Vehicle identification number and unit number of the vehicle.

Virginia Overweight / Oversize Fines

The officer or size and weight compliance agent charging the violation shall serve a citation on the operator of the overweight vehicle. The citation shall be directed to the owner, operator, or other person responsible for the overweight violation as determined by the officer or size and weight compliance agent. Service of the citation on the vehicle operator shall constitute service of process upon the owner, operator, or other person charged with the weight. An alleged weight violation which is contested shall be tried as a civil case. If judgment is for the Commonwealth, payment shall be made to the Department.

In addition, the owner, operator, or other person responsible for the overweight violation will be charged a $25 civil penalty, a $20 processing fee, a $2 weighing fee, plus additional liquidated damages of $20.

If the vehicle’s gross weight exceeds the weight limit by 25% to 50%, the assessment is doubled. If the gross weight is over 50%, the assessment is tripled. Fines are assessed based on the weight in excess of the permit.

WEIGHT                  FINE

0 – 2,000 lbs            $0.01 cents per lb.

2,001 – 4,000 lbs     $0.03 cents per lb.

4,001 – 8,000 lbs     $0.12 cents per lb.

8,001 – 12,000 lbs   $0.22 cents per lb.

12,001 and over        $0.35 cents per lb.

 

Running Hours and Holiday Restrictions

Warning Flag Requirements

High intensity amber flashing lights, visible for at least 500 ft., must be used on any vehicle more than 12 ft. wide or more than 75 ft. long. Such lights must be mounted on the top of the towing vehicle. Not required when accompanied by an escort vehicle. Two amber lights at top front corners, and two red lights mounted on the rear of the vehicle/load. When vehicle/load exceeds 12 ft. wide or 75 ft. long, flashing amber lights, visible for

"Oversize Load" Banner Requirements

“Oversize Load” signs are required on front and rear of the vehicle/load for all over-dimensional permit loads.

Flag Requirements

Flags must be displayed on all four corners of all oversize loads, and at the widest extremities of the vehicle or load on wide loads and at the extreme rear of overlength loads. Flags must also be used on rear overhangs exceeding 4 ft.

500 ft., must be displayed on the tractor and at the upper rear end of the load or vehicle.

Flags, Lights and Banners

Travel for permitted loads are sunrise to sunset, Monday through Saturday.

No travel within the corporate limits of cities/towns between 7 am to 9 am and 4 pm to 6 pm (some exceptions).

No travel on Sunday (some exceptions by permit).

No travel on state observed holidays: New Year's Day, Memorial Day, Independence Day, Labor Day, Thanksgiving Day, and Christmas Day.

There are numerous additional cautions and restrictions in the Newport News, Portsmouth, Norfolk areas.

Virginia Tire Regulations

Tires must be in good condition with no cuts in the tire tread visible. Front tires must have a tread groove pattern not less than 4/32. Other tires should have a tread groove of not less than 2/32.

Virginia Annual Permits

To be eligible for obtaining Blanket Permit the vehicle should not exceed the following dimensions:

Dimensions: 

Length: 150 ft.

Width: 15 ft.

Height: 15 ft.

Cost: 

Blanket fee - $100 for 1 year; $200 for two years

Note: A mileage fee of $40 and a damage fee of $360 per year will be added if overweight. If the vehicle configuration cannot be licensed in Virginia (Mobile homes and Manufactured homes included), the $40 mileage fee per year will apply.

Time, it takes to receive: 1 week

Mailing method: mail

Commodity specific? Truck specific

Need to obtain a route? Yes

Virginia Road Conditions

VDOT reminds drivers that work zone safety is Everybody's Responsibility. VDOT reminds drivers who See the Cone to Respect the Zone, not just in the height of construction season, but all year long.

Virginia Manufactured Houses and Mobile homes

Single Trip Permit 

One move between origin and destination.

Maximum Dimensions:

Height: 15 feet 

Width: 15 feet 

Length: 150 feet

Fee: $20; Mobile homes and Manufactured housing will pay a flat fee of $1.00 in lieu of the 30 cents per mile fee.

Valid for: up to 13 days

Mailing method: online

Blanket Permit 

Multiple moves over a specified period of time.

Maximum Dimensions:

Height: 14 feet 

Width: 14 feet 

Length: 100 feet

Fee: $100 for one year; $200 for two years

A mileage fee of $40 and a damage fee of $360 per year will be added if overweight. If the vehicle configuration cannot be licensed in Virginia (Mobile homes and Manufactured homes included), the $40 mileage fee per year will apply.

Time, it takes to receive: 10 business days

Mailing method: online


Oversize / Overweight Regulations By State