When driving through North Carolina, you’ll want to turn on the radio to catch the music of up-and-coming musicians. John Coltrane, Nina Simone, and James Taylor are just a few of the legendary musicians from North Carolina. And though none of these artists wrote a catchy song about obtaining a North Carolina oversize permit, we’re hoping that thought sticks in your head.
If you need assistance obtaining a permit, we at The Permit Company can help. We work directly with state and local agencies on your behalf to take the hassle out of obtaining oversize and overweight truck permits. Below you can find everything you need to know about moving oversized loads through North Carolina and how to obtain the necessary permits.
1. How long are oversize permits valid in North Carolina?
Single-trip permits are valid for 10 calendar days.
2. What are the legal dimensions for loads in North Carolina?
The legal limits in North Carolina are as follows:
- Gross Weight: 80,000 lbs. on all roads (federal bridge formula applies)
- Width: 8’6” on all roads
- Height: 13’6” on all roads
- Length: 40’ for single unit and buses; 53’ for semi-trailers on designated highways (48’ on all other roads); 28’ for twins/doubles (on designated highways only, not allowed on other roads); no limit for autotransporters on designated highways as long as trailer does not exceed 53’ (65’ limit on all other roads)
- Overhang: 5’ in front or rear
3. What are the permit limits for loads in North Carolina?
The routine-issue permit limits in North Carolina are as follows:
- Steer: 20,000 lbs.
- Single: 25,000 lbs.
- Tandem: 50,000 lbs.
- Tridum: 60,000 lbs.
- 4 or more axle groupings: 68,000 lbs.
- Gross Weight:
- 5 axles: 112,000 lbs.
- 6 axles: 120,000 lbs.
- 7 axles: 132,000 lbs.
- Must have 51’ wheelbase for all of the above
- Length: No set limit. Beams and girders 120’.
- Width: 15’ depending on load
- Height: No set limits on height, but depends on clearances on chosen routes. Loads over 14’ must be submitted for approval 2 days in advance of movement.
4. Is continuous travel allowed for oversize permits in North Carolina?
Travel is allowed from sunrise to sunset, 7 days a week for permitted vehicles. Loads not exceeding 112,000 lbs. and legal dimensions can travel continuously 24/7.
For Independence Day, Thanksgiving Day and Christmas Day, travel is prohibited from noon the weekday preceding until noon the weekday following for loads exceeding 112,000 lbs.
5. When are escorts needed in North Carolina?
On two-lane highways:
- 1 front escort is needed for widths 12-14’
- 1 front and 1 rear escort (2 total) needed for widths 14’1”-15’
On multi-lane highways:
- 1 rear escort is needed for widths 12-15’
On all highways:
- 1 front and 1 rear escort (2 total) needed for widths over 14’
- 1 rear escort needed for lengths over 110’
- 1 front and 1 rear escort (2 total) needed for lengths over 150’
- 1 front escort with height pole needed for heights over 14’5”
- 1 front escort needed for weights exceeding 150,000 lbs.
Escort requirements vary with mobile/modular homes—contact us and we’ll give you the specifics.
6. What is a superload in North Carolina?
In North Carolina, loads that exceed normal permit issues are typically considered superloads:
- Weights in excess of 132,000 lbs. with over 68,000 lbs. per 4 or more axle groupings
- Widths over 15’
If you need help getting an oversize permit in North Carolina, or have a question about permits in any other states, give us a call at (800) 359-9407 or send us an email.