2021 Rhode Island state shipping laws, regulations, and limitations for shipping oversize and heavy haul loads.


Rhode Island State Seal.


Physical address:
Rhode Island Department of Motor Vehicles State Office Bldg., Room 106
Providence, RI 02903

Rhode Island Turn Pike and Bridge Authority: 401-423-0800.

Note: Rhode Island oversize and heavy haul trucking permits are valid for 5 days unless otherwise specified on the permit.

Email:  tomv@nicusa.com
Help: telephone line: 401-462-4368 order permits by phone from 6 am to 4:30 pm M-F.
Hours: Monday – Friday 8:30 am – 4:30 pm
Eastern Time Zone

Click here for the Rhode Island State DOT website for oversize and heavy haul trucking permit registration or you can study the user guide.

Legal Loads:
Length: Interstate and designated highways; 53 feet maximum semitrailer (kingpin to centerline of rear axle group must not exceed 41 feet) and on all other routes, the maximum trailer length is 48 feet.
Width: 8’ 6” wide.
Height: 13’ 6” tall.
Weight: 80,000 lbs. GVW, 22,400 single, 36,000 tandem, tridem; 42,000 with axles spacings less than 4’6″ or 42,750 pounds with 4’6″ spacings.
Overhang: 3′ in the front and 6′ from the rear of the trailer.

Routine heavy haul, oversize shipping, trucking, and transport permits:
Length: Rhode Island makes a determination on each individual shipment depending on the proposed route and dimensions.
Width: Rhode Island makes a determination on each individual shipment depending on the proposed route and dimensions.
Height: Rhode Island makes a determination on each individual shipment depending on the proposed route and dimensions.
Weight: Rhode Island makes a determination on each individual shipment depending on the proposed route and total weight which is usually determined by axle spacings. Typically 22,500 pounds per axle is permitted on 5 axles, 6 axles, or 7 axles but this is all contingent upon actual spacings, weight, and routing However if your heavy haul shipment is over 200,000 pounds you will be required to retain an outside engineering firm to survey your proposed routes.
Overhang: If in excess of 3 feet in the front or 6 feet from the rear of the trailer Rhode Island will make a determination on each individual shipment depending on the proposed route and dimensions.

Travel times and restrictions:
Travel permitted one-half hour before sunrise until one-half hour after sunset. No weekend travel is permitted. No travel on major holidays and on Victory over Japan Day (2nd Monday in August). Movement may be restricted after 12:00 noon the day before any holiday. Rhode Island Turn Pike middle lane maximum width allowed is 15’10”. The maximum width in the outside lane is 14’10”. If you need more information please call the Turn Pike: 401-423-0800.

Pilot Car and Escort vehicle information:
Length: If the load is 75′ to 95′ on a 2 load road you will need one rear pilot car (escort).
Width: 10′ 6″ to 12′ wide on a 2 lane road requires 1 front pilot car. On a 4 lane road up to 12′ wide requires no escorts. When the load is 12′ 1″ to 14′ wide 1 front and 1 rear pilot car (escort) is required on all 2 lane roads and 1 rear on all 4 lane roads. For loads 14′ 1″ – 15′ wide 1 front and 1 rear pilot car (escort) is required. 15′ 1″ to 16′ wide on 2 lane requires 2 front pilot cars (escorts) and 1 rear pilot car (escort). On 4 all lane roads 1 front and 2 rear pilot cars (escorts) are required. If you do have a permit for weekend travel you will be required to have a police escort. Districts and Parkways may require additional escorts as well. Vehicles traveling with a width of over 14′ wide will not be allowed to travel on Fridays except on Parkway. The maximum width allowed on the Parkway is 16′ and must be accompanied by a police escort if over 15′.
Height: If the height of the load exceeds 15′ a front high pole card is required.
Weight: Check with the State to see if your weight class will require a pilot car/escort.
Overhang: If the front overhang is over 10′ on 2 or 4 lane roads 1 front pilot car (escort) is required. If rear overhang exceeds 10′ on a 2 or 4 lane road one rear escort is required.

Pilot car and escort vehicle requirements:

All pilot cars/escort vehicles must display a bumper or roof-mounted “OVERSIZE LOAD” sign visible from both the front and rear of the vehicle. The sign must be at least 5′ long and 12″ in height, yellow in color with black letters no less than 10″ tall and 1 1/2″ in width. Vehicle must have 2 safety flags red or orange in color, and be a minimum of 18″ of length and/or height mounted at a 40 to 70-degree angle on all 4 corners of the vehicle. Company identification signs must be placed on both sides of the pilot car (escort vehicle) displaying the name of the company, phone number and be placed on both the left and right-hand sides of the vehicle. These signs must be no less than 8″ tall x 12″ wide and identity writing must be plainly legible. The vehicle must be equipped with a horizontally mounted rotating (or strobe) amber-colored flashing light which must be visible from a 360-degree angle from a minimum of 500 feet. Vehicles must be equipped with a CB radio or 2-way communication device, 2 – 5 pound fire extinguishers type A, B, and C, a sign with the word “STOP” on one side and “SLOW” on the other with dimensions of no less than 18″ in diameter with a minimum of 6″ letters. A red safety colored flag with a handle no less than 18″ square, 3 reflective emergency road triangles or 18″ traffic cones, 2 OVERSIZE LOAD banners (yellow with black lettering), and a safety colored (red, orange, yellow, or lime green) vest, jacket or shirt (used while directing traffic).

Additional info.

Rhode Island cities: Ashaway, Barrington, Bradford, Bristol, Central Falls, Cranston, Cumberland Hill, East Providence, Greenville, Harrisville, Hope Valley, Kingston, Melville, Narragansett Pier, Newport, Newport East, North Providence, Pascoag, Pawtucket, Providence, Tiverton, Valley Falls, Wakefield-Peacedale, Warwick, Westerly, West Warwick, Woonsocket.

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 Rhode Island State DOT Permits office before commencing movement.






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