What Is Heavy Haul Trucking? An In-Depth Overview


Heavy haul trucks have an important role in transporting commodities and providing logistical assistance to industries and other sectors. A secure, legal, and safe method of transporting goods is always necessary which is the main advantage of heavy haul trucking. Size and amount of freight come into play in heavy haul type of trucking due to federal and other laws. Therefore, it is important for the driver, manager, sender, and receiver to choose the best option by understanding heavy haul trucking. 

Whenever you want to send or transport some heavy freight as a driver, you often need to choose an option. You will end up in confusion due to ambiguous terms and incorrect information. Therefore, in this blog, you will get information about heavy haul trucks and related information. 

What Does Heavy Haul Trucking Means? 

Heavy haul trucking is a term that refers to the transport of heavy size and heavy weight cargo loads. Such types of loads are often oversized and overweight and are more than what the regulations and standards allow. Therefore, heavy-duty trucking is a sector that serves such a type of industry. It can include construction, manufacturing industries, and sectors that need such support to move heavy loads and equipment. 

Moreover, to serve the industry, this type of trucking is often unique comprising special features, and is able to handle large loads as well as transport them through challenges. Typical loads include large equipment, powerful machines, engines, and other systems. 

Therefore, heavy haul trucks are special for large loads of transportation that exceed the standard limits. Moreover, you need a special type of qualification such as a Comercial Driver’s License (CDL) to drive such a type of truck. 

Standards For Loads of Heavy Haul 

The concerning department for heavy haul load transportation is the U.S. Department of Transportation through its division Federal Highway Administration (FHWA). Any load or cargo exceeding the limit by size, or by weight, is subject to regulations and is often known as heavy haul trucking. The standards are given as:

  • Size: Height (Set By States), Width (8 Inch 6 Feet), and Length (48 Inches To 53 Inches). 
  • Axle: Single (20,000 lbs), Steer Axle (12,000 lbs), and Tandem Axle (34,000 lbs). 
  • Weight: Total weight (80,000 lbs)

What Are Heavy Duty Commodities?

A heavy load is a cargo that is overweight and oversize. It can be from different industries and sectors such as the power generation sector, construction equipment industry, and industrial manufacturing sector. Their safe, legal transport requires proper heavy haul trucking with the right route and permit. Moreover, such types of loads can be boats and planes, mining and agricultural equipment, power-generating turbines, homes, cranes and timber, and boilers. 

On the other hand, the weight-carrying ability of the heavy hauler is dependable on trailer specifications, its type and axle configurations, and other factors. However, heavy haulers can carry 80,000 pounds to 200,000 and over with variations according to local laws. 

Classification and Types of Heavy Haul Trucks

There are different types of trailers for heavy haul trucking. It includes extendable double-drop deck trailers and extendable double-drop deck trailers for tall height and extra-large cargo. On the other hand, you can use step-decker trailers for more tall cargo (8’6”) with only a single deck. Moreover, you can also use extendable flatbed and removable gooseneck trailers for long roads and easy on and off loading respectively. 

Heavy haulers are different from other trucks and contain special equipment such as reinforced frames, strong suspension systems, and powerful engines to accommodate extra weight and size of heavy loads. They may have extra axles in configuration to accommodate the weight and carry the load evenly in compliance with state regulations. 

Moreover, you will require a double frame which consists of two parallel steel rails for extra strength for heavy haul trailers. It is not a requirement but is optional to avoid stress on the truck’s frame. All the specifications of heavy haulers are to adjust the loads. 

How To Get A Permit For Heavy Haul With Legal Requirements

You can follow the below process to get a permit for a heavy hauler: 

  • Gather permit requirements by determining the size, weight, and state jurisdiction of your heavy hauler. 
  • Determine the route and collect information about the route, and loads. 
  • Forward permit applications to the regulator or department according to local and state laws. You will require additional documents and need to pay the applicable fee. 
  • Finally, collect your permit and plan your route accordingly to avoid restrictions. 

Further Requirements For Heavy Haul Trucking

In addition to getting a permit, you should also follow the rules and regulations during your journey. It also requires special route planning. Drivers must keep an eye on obstacles or power lines and seasonal requirements. Other requirements include using a safety flad of orange or red fluorescent color to assist in gauging the clearance. Moreover, you will also require yellow LED lights for low visibility or night traveling. On the other hand, you have to check whether you require escort cars or even police for your super loads. Additionally, you need to determine the proper loads for interstate traveling and local streets. Drivers also use yellow banners on the front and back indicating “oversized load” or “wide load”. 

Cost of Heavy Haul Trucking

The cost fluctuates and there is a lot of variation. But you can expect a $4-$9 per mile with fuel. You can use a simple formula:

Total Cost Formula= $1 * Total Axles Requirement (According to weight) * Total Lenght Of Haul.

Example, Total Cost= $1 * 7 Axles (65,000 Pounds) * 1000 miles= $7000


Transporting the heavy load which is oversized and overweight is not that simple. You need heavy haul trucking to perform the job. Safe. secure and legal transportation of heavy loads and cargo is necessary to avoid damages and law violations. Therefore, understanding the requirements for heavy haul trucking is necessary for everyone. You need to understand permits, safety, and other requirements. Finally, you need to determine the route and prices to start your journey.