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It would be normal to assume that transporting a heavy haul load would be the same anywhere within the U.S., but that’s not the case. There are federal laws that apply to all heavy haulers, but there are also state laws of which drivers must be cognizant if they’re transporting across state lines.

Those rules can range from whether or not snow tires are mandatory to the specific safety equipment that the driver must carry in the tractor. Hauling those loads across state lines involves extensive planning, coordination, logistics and knowledge of state laws to ensure fines and delays aren’t incurred.

Transporting Across State Lines

Oversized Load Limits

The Department of Transportation sets the standards for what constitutes a heavy haul in terms of height, weight, width and length. However, there are some states that have conflicting standards. Heavy haul companies must be cognizant of those standards in the states through which the load will travel and compensate for them.

Travel Times

The times during which a heavy haul load varies among states. Some restrict transporting across state lines travel to the hours between sunrise and sunset. Others may prohibit heavy haul loads from traveling during specially designated rush hour traffic. In some instances, it’s more expedient to take a different route entirely and bypass certain states.

Escort Vehicles

The state laws governing escort vehicles is a hodge-podge of requirements. Some states require one escort vehicle, others require two, and still other states don’t require one at all when transporting across state lines. Similar situations can arise with oversize load signage.

Licensing and Registration

Drivers only need a CDL license and be 21 years old when transporting across state lines with a heavy haul load. However, the commercial vehicle will require a U.S. Department of Transportation number for traveling across state lines.

Drive Times

There are very stringent rules set forth by the Department of Transportation as to how many hours a truck driver can actually operate. The catch is that some states have rules that contradict federal standards.

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