Oversized Loading in Freight Transportation Explained


Luis Lopez

Considering that road transportation is the main mode of transport, it is important for truck drivers to know everything about oversized loading. This article explains in detail all there is about oversized loading, permits, and costs of permits in freight transportation.

What is Oversized Loading?

Oversized loading is experienced when transport vehicles haul items that are considered too heavy and large for the road it is traveling on. There are established legal sizes and weight limits, that all drivers should be aware of so as to guide them and let them know when they are transmitting oversized loading.

oversize and wide loading
Oversize and Wide loading

What is an oversize load?

An oversize load, also known as a wide load, can be explained as a load that surpasses the standard legal size or weight restraints for a truck to transfer on a designated part of a highway, road, or any other shipping infrastructure such as air or water freight.

What is considered an oversize load?

An oversize load is considered to be a load that surpasses the maximum length, height, or width dimension. Typically, the maximal legal height and width are 13.5 to 14.5 feet and 8.5 feet. The legal length (both in definition and measurement) varies significantly from state to state. Although the legal vehicle width varies as well, 8.5 feet is considered standard for interstates and major highways.

Oversize Load Permits in Florida

Oversize load permits are exceptional types of non-permanent permits which approve the movement of vehicles with a total weight surpassing legal weights. These permits can only be issued after a thorough weight analysis of the planned route. Additionally, the permits are only issued to vehicles equipped with pneumatic tires, of acceptable width.

In Florida oversize load permits are crucial in order to ship a vehicle or collective vehicles whose sizes and weights outstrip the maximal size and weight set up by the law over highways in the state. Drivers can obtain these permits from the Florida Department of Transportation Permits Officer.

In this state, loads exceeding the width of 15’, the height of 15’, and the length of 150’, are considered superloads. The overweight permits are valid for ten days. The state also demands that vehicles hauling oversized loads to have yellow and black “WIDE LOAD” or “OVERSIZE LOAD” signs or banners placed at the front and back of the vehicles that surpass the width of 10’. 

oversize loading
Oversize loading

How much does an oversize load permit cost?

Most drivers, who transport overweight or oversize loads regularly are familiar with the demand for oversize and overweight permits. As discussed above, permits are necessary for vehicles with loads exceeding the standard legal weights. Fees for permits are set on the nature of the load. These fees/costs range from as minute as $15 to more than $70 for the same oversize load, depending on the state. Drivers or vehicle owners may also be charged around $15 to process their permit applications. Operators who ship oversize loads often are allowed to create accounts with the state, to lower or get rid of application costs for future permits.

The Florida Law issues a penalty of not more than $1,000 per violation for the length, height, or width of the vehicle if it is declared to be of an oversize load and without a valid permit.


In conclusion, vehicle owners and drivers must have a clear understanding of what oversize loading is, what they should consider being an oversize load, what oversize load permits are and their requirements, and how much it costs to secure an oversize load permit. Having this information is very important because shipping oversize loads can not be avoided especially in the present day, and having this knowledge will guide them.


  • Luis Lopez

    Mr. Luis Lopez is a serial entrepreneur who sets the standards in logistics from South Florida to the world. Founder of one of the fastest-growing companies in the US, ranked by INC 5000 Magazine.

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