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Louisiana Oversize-Overweight Permit (6-LA-a)

In Louisiana, a developer may need an Oversize-Overweight Permit (“Permit”) from the Louisiana Department of Transportation & Development (“LDOTD”) to transport loads that exceed the maximum dimensions or weight limit allowed on Louisiana state roads. LDOTD regulates oversized and overweight loads pursuant to Louisiana – La. Rev. Code. §§ 32:380 et seq., Size, Width, Height, Length, Weight and Load of Vehicles in Regular Operation and Louisiana – La. Rev. Code §§ 32:387 et seq., Vehicle Special Permits.


Oversize-Overweight Permit Process

6-LA-a.1 to 6-LA-a.2 – Does the Load Exceed the Applicable Size or Weight Regulations?

The developer must obtain a Permit if the project requires transportation along Louisiana roads of loads of a size or weight that exceed the maximum standards. If none of the dimensional or weight requirements are exceeded, then no Permit is required.

Generally, LDOTD only issues a Permit to indivisible vehicles and loads, which “cannot be easily divided, broken down, or dismantled to conform to the legal limitations.” L.R.S. § 32:386; L.A.C. § 73:I.701.B. Exceptions are noted in L.A.C. § 73:I.701.B.1.

The maximum allowable dimensions for unpermitted vehicles are as follows:

Additionally, a combination of vehicles cannot consist of more than two vehicles. Exceptions are the following:

  • Combinations of at truck-tractor and two trailers;
  • Truck-tractor and two semi-trailers; or
  • Truck-tractor, semi-trailer, and trailer;

L.R.S. § 32:386; L.A.C. § 73:I.503.G.1. These twin trailer combinations are also subject to route limitations. L.R.S. § 32:386; L.A.C. § 73:I.503.G.2.

The maximum allowable weights are:

  • Maximum gross weight: 80,000 pounds;
  • Maximum weight on a tire: 650 pounds per inch width of a tire;
  • Maximum single axle weight: 20,000 pounds on interstate highways, 22,000 pounds on non-interstate highways;
  • Maximum tandem axle weight: 34,000 pounds on interstate highways, 37,000 pounds on non-interstate highways;
  • Maximum tridum axle weight: 42,000 pounds on interstate highways, 45,000 pounds on non-interstate highways;
  • Maximum quadrum axle weight: 50,000 pounds on interstate highways, 53,000 pounds on non-interstate highways;
  • Maximum tridum/quadrum vehicle weight: 83,400 pounds on interstate highways, 88,000 pounds on non-interstate highways

L.R.S. § 32:386; L.A.C. § 73:I.503.A.


6-LA-a.3 – Determine Which Permit is Needed

A developer must determine what kind of Permit is needed, depending on what is being moved and the size and/or weight of the load. These permits include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Oversize Permit;
  • Overweight Permit;
  • Monthly Oversize Permit; and
  • Utility Vehicle Permit.

L.A.C. § 73:I.303.

6-LA-a.4 – Contact Local Authorities, Etc. (If Applicable)

LDOTD recommends that, for loads greater than 18’ in width, the developer obtain permission of parish and municipal authorities, utility companies, and private property owners before requesting a Permit. L.A.C. § 73:I.715.

6-LA-a.5 to 6-LA-a.6 – Contact LDOTD District Office (If Applicable)

For loads that exceed 16’ 5” in height and/or 18’ in width, the developer must contact the LDOTD District Office in the district where the move begins. The developer must also submit an LDOTD Route Clearance Request Form. This request may take up to 48 hours for the LDOTD to approve. If the load exceeds 16’5” in height then the developer must receive a district authorization from the origination district office, as well as from all other districts in which the load will travel before submitting a Permit Application. L.A.C. §§ 73:I.716.

6-LA-a.7 – Post Certificate of Insurance (If Applicable)

If the vehicle or load is overweight or 14’ wide or more, the developer must post a liability bond or certificate of insurance at the LDOTD permit office, insuring any damage to state property, before LDOTD issues a Permit. L.A.C. § 73:I.705.A. The bond or certificate of insurance must be for a minimum of $100,000 for a single trip or $250,000 for a year. L.A.C. § 73:I.705.B.

6-LA-a.8 – Oversize-Overweight Permit Application

The developer must apply for and obtain a permit before the oversize/overweigh vehicle or load moves within or enters the state of Louisiana. Permits are only available from the truck permit office in Baton Rouge, or through the Permits Electronic Routing Bridge Analysis (PERBA) System, depending on the permit type. L.A.C. § 73:I.701.D. LDOTD stationary enforcement units do not issue permits.

The maximum Permit limits are:

  • Single axle: 24,000 pounds if gross vehicle weight (“GVW”) is ≤120,000 pounds; 20,000 pounds if GVW is >120,000 pounds;
  • Tandem axle: 48,000 pounds if GVW is ≤ 120,000 pounds; 40,000 pounds if GVW is >120,000 pounds;
  • Tridum axle: 60,000 pounds.

L.A.C. § 73:I.711.

Depending on the type of load and the developer’s wishes, the developer may submit a variety of permit forms:

  • The LDOTD A-Form is prepaid, and may only be used for oversize loads on single trips, not for overweight loads. L.A.C. § 73:I.305.D.
  • The LDOTD C-Form is prepaid and may only be used by charge customers. This form is valid for oversize permits, overweight permits, and monthly oversize permits. L.A.C. § 73:305.C. For more information about charge accounts, see L.A.C. § 73:I.721.A.4.
  • The LDOTD Regular Permit Form (P-Form) must be submitted by mail or in person at the LDOTD truck permit office. Regular Permits may be used for oversize permits, overweight permits, and monthly oversize permits. L.A.C. § 73:I.305.A.

All federal, state, and local government agencies must apply for Oversize-Overweight Permits, when necessary. These permits are issued free of charge to government agencies, except government-owned utility companies. L.A.C. § 73:I.707.


6-LA-a.9 to 6-LA-a.14– Is the Load Greater Than 18 Feet in Height and Travelling Through the New Orleans Area?

If the load is greater than 18’ in height and will be travelling through the New Orleans area, the developer must contact LDOTD’s District Maintenance Engineer before movement of the load begins in order to obtain a District Authorization Number for the use of state highways. L.A.C. § 73:I.719.

Certain procedures must be followed before the LDOTD gives its final approval of and issues the Permit. For instance, LDOTD must determine whether any utility lines along the route must be adjusted or removed to accommodate the vehicle. If the load being moved exceeds the required vertical clearance of utility lines along the route, the developer must pay for any adjustments or removal. L.A.C. § 73:I.719.B. If the developer wishes LDOTD and the utility companies to compile an estimate of the cost of those adjustments, the developer must notice at least four working days before moving within the area. L.A.C. § 73:I.719.B.2.

After receiving the District Authorization Number, the developer must call each utility company with lines crossing the proposed route, give them the number, and request clearance to move. After investigating the requested route, the utility companies contact the developer and the LDOTD District Maintenance Engineer with their approval. Once all utility companies issue their approval, the District Maintenance Engineer contacts the LDOTD truck permit office and notifies the office that all authorizations have been received. L.A.C. § 73:I.719.B.

Unless unusual conditions are involved, movement of a load may not be delayed more than seven days after notification by the developer. L.A.C. § 73:I.719.B.6.

6-LA-a.15 to 6-LA-a.17 – Review Application Materials for Completeness

LDOTD reviews the Permit Application for administrative and technical completeness. LDOTD verifies that all information on the Application is correctly filled in and that all

If the route chosen by the developer is inappropriate (for example, because the chosen route crosses a bridge that cannot withstand the weight of the load), LDOTD alters the route as needed.

LDOTD generally does not outright deny a Permit Application. If the Application is incomplete or the load exceeds the relevant weight or dimension requirements, LDOTD returns the Application to the developer to provide the required additional information or alter the load as necessary.

6-LA-a.18 – Oversize-Overweight Permit

LDOTD may impose additional conditions when issuing Oversize-Overweight Permits, including requirements for additional axles, routine, date, time of day, speed limit, escort(s), etc. L.A.C. § 73:I.701.C. However, all Permits are issued on the condition that the developer “accepts and uses it at his or her own risk, even though all instructions, directions, and requirements of the department have been followed.” L.A.C. § 73:I.703.A. Vehicle escort requirements are found at L.A.C. § 73:I.309.B and L.A.C. § 73:I.1901.

Once received, the Permit must be carried in the vehicle at all times and must be available for inspection. L.A.C. § 73:I.701.E.


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