Virginia Trucking Resources

Size, weight, and equipment requirements

Virginia has various regulations regarding vehicle size (length, width, and height), and weight, as well as equipment and safety devices (e.g. tires, lights etc.) for travel on the commonwealth's highways.

See the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) “Size, Weight, and Equipment Requirements” for details. Phone: 804-497-7100.

For size and weight services for motor carriers, such as information on monitoring, inspection and enforcement, vehicle size, weight, and equipment requirements, etc., contact DMV's Motor Carrier Services Division at 804-249-5130.

Hauling permits

Overweight and oversized loads need permits to travel legally in Virginia.

Contact DMV's Hauling Permit Section during office hours, 7:45 a.m. to 4 p.m., at 804-497-7135, by fax at 804-367-0063.

Emergency hauling permits

For an emergency after hours, contact the Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) Emergency Operations Center at 800-367-7623.

Vehicle restrictions and limitations

There are additional size and weight restrictions, limitations, and requirements for travel on certain highways, bridges, and tunnels, and on locally-maintained roads (within cities and towns and in Henrico and Arlington counties). These are below.

hazard signs

Hazardous material restrictions 

For information on the transport of hazardous materials on highways in Virginia or through one of the six state-owned tunnels, see DMV’s “Size, Weight, and Equipment Requirements.“

For information on transporting hazardous materials through the Chesapeake Bay Bridge Tunnel, see http://www.cbbt.com/hazmat.html or call 757-331-2960. 

Note: The Airport Tunnel in the city of Roanoke (Route 118) is restricted to all hazardous materials. A suggested detour: Hershberger Road (Route 101) to Williamson Road (Route 11), then Peters Creek Road (Route 117).

Weight, height and width restrictions 

Certain bridges and tunnels have additional weight, height, and width limitations posted.  

A list of restricted structures (due to height, width and weight) on state-maintained roadways  is available upon request: vdotmapfiles@vdot.virginia.gov

Trucks and other vehicles over 13 feet 6 inches high are prohibited on Interstate 64 west at the Hampton Roads Bridge-Tunnel, on Interstate 264 through the Downtown Tunnel (either direction) and on Route 58 through the Midtown Tunnel (either direction.)

Tractor trailers wider than 8 feet are prohibited on I-264 west through the Downtown Tunnel. Additional details and alternative routes

Designated truck routes

Twin trailers, triple saddle mounts and automobile and watercraft transporters must use the designated Surface Transportation Assistance Act (STAA) highway system in Virginia,

This system includes the National Network (all interstates and certain primary routes), the Virginia Qualifying System (including various other state primary highways) and the Virginia Access System, which provides direct access to certain terminals.

These routes are shown on the Virginia Truck Routing Map, along with related vehicle and length-based restrictions.

A printed version of the map is available at major safety rest areas and welcome centers.

Note: Triple saddle mount combinations more than 75 feet long (up to the maximum allowable length of 97 feet) may only travel on the National Network.

Up to one road-mile of travel off the National Network and Virginia Qualifying Highways (but not the Virginia Access System) is allowed to reach terminals, fuel, food, rest and repairs.

Special use permit

A special use permit can be obtained free where travel beyond the allowable one mile off the designated STAA system is required to reach a terminal for delivery or pick-up.

Contact DMV's Hauling Permit Section at 804-497-7135, by fax at 804-367-0063.

For permission to access terminals off the designated system within cities and towns and in Henrico and Arlington counties, contact locality officials.  

For additional questions regarding designated STAA truck routes, and length restrictions or limitations on state-maintained roads, contact VDOT at 800-FOR-ROAD (800-367-7623).

Length restrictions

Various highways have restrictions on the length of “through” trucks or other vehicles or configurations.

These highways are posted and specify a particular vehicle (e.g. “No Thru” trucks, tractor-trailers etc.) or a certain length (e.g. “No Thru Trucks over 35 feet”).  

There are a number of routes posted with a warning indicating “Trucks Not Recommended.” These roads have undesirable conditions. Drivers are strongly encouraged to avoid them.

There are a small number of (non-interstate) routes where tractor-trailers over 65 feet are prohibited.

These restrictions are shown on the Virginia Truck Routing Map, which also indicates the designated STAA system. It is available here or here (for a printable version).

Temporary restrictions and incidents 

Various ad-hoc restrictions can exist at any time due to weather, incidents or construction, etc.sdfv

For information on current traffic conditions, incidents, temporary restrictions, road closures, etc., go to 511virginia.org or call 511 toll free.

Other travel information: http://www.virginiadot.org.

Other restrictions

Several highways in Virginia are federally maintained and have restrictions on commercial access. These include the Blue Ridge Parkway, George Washington Memorial Parkway, Colonial Parkway and Skyline Drive. 

Contact the National Park Service for details.

Additional information and resources 

Information on national trucking regulations is available from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration and the Federal Highway Administration, divisions of the U. S. Department of Transportation

Industry associations

Page last modified: Sept. 18, 2017