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Michigan State Shipping Regulations

Michigan State Shipping Regulations

These are the Michigan state DOT shipping regulations, limitations, rules and laws for the trucking of oversize and over weight loads over the roads and highways.


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Trucking company & pilot car directory.

Locate trucking companies and pilot cars in Michigan state:

Michigan trucking company directory.
Michigan pilot car company directory.
Michigan easy do it yourself trucking permits.

Legal load limits.

Michigan legal load limits:

Length: Overall no longer than 75’ on designated highways.  Trailer length maximum is 50’.
Width:  96″ on non designated highways and 102″ (8’ 6”.) on designated.
Height: 13’ 6”
Weight: 80,000 lbs. GVW, 20,000 single, 34,000 tandem.
Overhang: 3’ in the front and anything over 4’ in the rear must be red flagged in the day and red light at night.

NOTE: You can check out the maximums on the Michigan state website as well. State maximums Michigan DOT website.

Routine trucking permits.

Routine overweight, oversize trucking and transport permits:

Length: Under 150’ long is routine.  Anything over is superload (105’ for mobile homes).
Width: Figure up to 16’ as a routine permit.  Anything over is going to looked at seriously and they may even classify you as superload (confirming 16’ as no typo).
Height: Up to 15’ is routine.  If you are over 15’ high count on needing a route survey.
Weight:  They will not confirm anything. Anything over 80,000 lbs is looked at on a case by case basis. Anything over 150,000 lbs is subject to a bridge weight study.
Overhang: Check with the Michigan DOT office for clarification.

Superload information.

Information about shipping superloads in the state of Michigan.

If your shipment is in excess of any of the following then you will be classified as a superload:

Length: Anything over 150′
Width: 16′
Height: 15′ – yes this is correct.
Notes: We have no weight max. Height may be on a case by case basis. Permit and info from Michigan DOT.

Legal travel times.

Travel times and restrictions:

Travel time is sunrise to sunset daylight only with the half hour after sunrise and a half hour after sunset leniency rule.  No weekend travel.  No holiday travel or the day after Christmas or Thanksgiving. They have rush hours rules from 7:00 AM to 9:00 AM and 3:00 PM to 6:00 PM in a whole list of counties (look on permit). Wind restrictions if over 24 MPH you can’t run. Frost and thaw laws in effect from Feb. until April on weight. You can view the original publish here and there is more information on Michigan thaw laws here as well.

When pilot cars are required.

When a pilot car or escort vehicle is needed:

Length: 90’ to 100’ one on the rear. Over 100’ needs a rear and a chase pilot car.
Width: Loads over 12 wide on 4 lane is required one rear. Front is required for loads on 2 lane highway over 12’ wide.  Front and rear is required for loads over 14’ wide. Front escort with height pole is required for 14’ 6” and over.
Height: Over 14’ 5” needs high pole. Over 15’ needs one front and one rear.
Overhang: If over 15’ one rear escort is needed.
Weight: If truck can maintain minimum speeds no pilot cars required unless excessive or superload.
Note: Allow 1 to 10 days for permits to be approved. Distance for pilot car to lead/chase load 500′ unless otherwise stated on permit. This is the distance between lead/chase and the truck/trailer. Maximum speeds of 45 MPH if 4 or more lanes, 35 MPH is under 4 lanes. Also read travel restrictions below.

Michigan DOT & misc. information.

Michigan DOT contact & misc. information:

Mailing address:
Michigan Department of Transportation – DOT
PO Box 30050
Lansing, MI  48909

Physical address:
Michigan Department of Transportation – DOT
7050 West Saginaw, Suite 43
Lansing, MI  48917

Farmers in Michigan read the laws.
Mobile homes and modular home shipments.
Email: click here for e-mail contact form on state website.
Help line: 517-241-8999 or main: 517-373-1837 Fax: 517-373-4340
Hours: Monday – Friday 7:30 AM – 4:30 PM

Eastern Standard Time

The information contained in these pages is research information primarily for use by oversize and overweight trucking company drivers, dispatchers and pilot car companies. While every effort is put into maintaining the accuracy of this information you must absolutely verify this information with the Michigan State DOT Permits office before commencing movement.
Michigan state DOT regulations for heavy haul and oversize loads.

Michigan state flag.

  1. 500′

  2. This is very useful info. Thanks for writing it.

  3. when following a load how far in front and how far behind should a escort vehicle be legally in the state of michigan ,please email me back with the regulations

    • Well Cousins Pilot Car, that’s a very good question so we called MDOT and asked them at (517)241-8999. They stated that the maximum distance Michigan requires between the truck and the load whether chasing or leading is 500′. They also told us that each individual permit would state the distance required (if different) on a load by load basis depending on the routing they assigned to the load as well as any special characteristics the load may have.

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