Truck Axle Weight Limits By State 2019

Roads in the United States are regulated in a number of ways, one of them concerning the weight of trucks and semis. Regulations are set on both the federal and state level and must be adhered to. It is common to see weigh stations along interstates for the purpose of weighing trucks to make sure that they are within the limitations.

There are a few reasons that trucks have weight limitations on roads and need to be properly weighed. The main reason is safety. Roads can only handle a certain amount of weight, especially in weaker spots such as bridges and overpasses; therefore, no vehicle can be over the weight limit of the weakest point on the road. Additionally, cargo that is too heavy can be dangerous to both the driver and other vehicles on the road. A truck that is carrying too much weight can make it difficult to brake and maneuver, posing a danger when trying to slow down or go down a hill.

The other two reasons for weighing trucks are taxes and profitability. Carriers pay taxes for the amount of stress put on the roads, and the weight of the trucks is used to calculate the taxes owed. As for profitability, many goods are valued based on their weight; therefore, weight is important in ensuring fair trade and increasing profits.

There are three different weights for trucks regulated by each state. The first is the maximum gross vehicle weight is the weight of the vehicle specified by the manufacturer including its chassis, body, engine, engine fluids, accessories, drivers, passengers and cargo. The maximum single axle weight is the amount of weight allowed on any one axle. The maximum tandem axle weight is the weight allowed on any tandem axle.

Trucks can be weighed by using wheel-weighers, concrete decks, portable truck scales, digital scales and more. Trucks that are found to be overweight at a weigh stations can face several consequences including paying fines up to $65 per pound overweight and, in some states, arresting the driver. It is important that each truck is weighed before departing on its route to avoid these repercussions.

The federal vehicle weight limits are 80,000 pounds gross vehicle weight, 20,000 pounds on a single axle, and 34,000 pounds on a tandem axle group. States, however, often have different limits.

The table below has each state’s maximum allowed weight for gross vehicle weight, single axle weight, and tandem axle weight.

State Maximum Gross Vehicle Weight (lbs) Maximum Single Axle Weight (lbs) Maximum Tandem Axle Weight (lbs) 2019 Pop.
Michigan164,00018,00032,00010,020,472
Florida147,00022,00044,00021,646,155
New York143,00019,491,339
Montana137,80020,00034,0001,074,532
South Dakota129,00020,00034,000892,631
Nevada129,00020,00034,0003,087,025
Iowa129,0003,167,997
Utah129,00020,00034,0003,221,610
Arizona129,00020,00040,0007,275,070
Indiana127,40022,40036,0006,718,616
Massachusetts127,40022,40036,0006,939,373
Ohio127,40021,00034,00011,718,568
Kansas120,00022,00034,0002,910,931
Missouri120,0006,147,861
Wyoming117,00020,00036,000572,381
Colorado110,00020,00036,0005,770,545
North Dakota105,50020,00034,000760,900
Idaho105,50020,00034,0001,790,182
Oregon105,50020,00034,0004,245,901
Washington105,50020,00034,0007,666,343
New Hampshire103,00022,40036,0001,363,852
Maine100,00022,40041,0001,342,097
Nebraska95,00020,00034,0001,940,919
Oklahoma90,00020,00034,0003,948,950
Hawaii88,00022,50034,0001,416,589
New Mexico86,40021,60034,2002,096,034
Vermont80,00022,40036,000627,180
District of Columbia80,00022,00036,000711,571
Rhode Island80,00022,40044,8001,056,738
Connecticut80,00022,40036,0003,567,871
South Carolina80,00020,00035,2005,147,111
Maryland80,00022,40034,0006,062,917
New Jersey80,00022,40034,0008,922,547
North Carolina80,00020,00038,00010,497,741
Georgia80,00020,34034,00010,627,767
Pennsylvania80,00012,813,969