Determining the desirable maximum limits of dimensions and weights of motor vehicles is approached on the basis of highway cost and the operating cost so far as the factors of economy are concerned. Axle weight, gross vehicle weight, and vehicle length are analyzed on the basis of six highway systems consisting of the rural and urban systems within the interstate, primary and secondary highway systems. The analysis is based on data on track weight studies conducted in 46 States; operating costs data obtained from truck fleet operators; and experimental data on pavements and bridges obtained from the comprehensive AASHO road test. Numerous other studies also contributed to the findings of the report. The desirable limits of dimensions and weights for immediate use were found to be the following: Vehicle height of 13.5 feet; Vehicle width of 102 inches; Maximum lengths on all highways of 40 feet for single-unit trucks and trailers, 55 feet for tractors and semitrailers, and 65 feet for any other combination of vehicles; Axle weight limits of 22,000 and 38,000 pounds for single and tandem axles respectively, and; gross weight limit of at least 120,000 pounds, or better yet, no gross weight limit at all with control of axle weight and spacing. /FHWA/

  • Supplemental Notes:
    • This report is a staff study and is the second volume of a two-volume report. The first volume is published as report No. FHWA-RD-73-69.
  • Corporate Authors:

    Federal Highway Administration

    Office of Research and Development, 1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE
    Washington, DC  United States  20590
  • Authors:
    • Winfrey, R
  • Publication Date: 1978-9

Media Info

  • Pagination: 397 p.

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00179461
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Source Agency: Federal Highway Administration
  • Report/Paper Numbers: FHWA-RD-73- 70 Final Rpt.
  • Files: TRIS, USDOT
  • Created Date: Sep 14 1978 12:00AM