The trucking industry transports over 70% of US freight or nearly 12 billion tons of goods per year, and heavy loads are no exception.
When you want to transport a massive load, don’t pick just any trucking company. You need a trucking company with heavy haul freight abilities and a proven track record. So how do you choose the right heavy haul trucking company? We’re breaking it down in this guide.
What’s Considered a Heavy Load?
Federal and state governments have guidelines about how large a load a commercial truck can haul in the US. Load allowances vary based on the truck’s weight, type of axles, and size.
These guidelines specify whether a truck is a light, medium, or heavy-duty truck based on its weight and capacities.
Light trucks are non-commercial trucks like pick-up trucks. A small pick-up weighs an average of 5,000–7,000 pounds, but light trucks can weigh up to 14,000 pounds.
Medium trucks range from delivery trucks to single-axle trucks. These types of trucks weigh anywhere from 14,001 to 26,000 pounds.
Heavy-duty trucks weigh between 26,001 and 33,001 pounds. Garbage trucks and small semis to dump trucks and freight liners are also heavy-duty.
The average 18-wheeler truck — a semi-truck with trailer and chassis attached — weighs 35,000 pounds.
In the US, a heavy-duty truck can have a gross weight of up to 80,000 pounds. That means that an 18-wheeler weighing 35,000 pounds can haul a shipment of up to 45,000 pounds.
In Texas, a single axle vehicle can haul loads weighing up to 20,000 pounds. Tandem axle trucks can carry loads that weigh as much as 34,000 pounds.
The Federal government also places weight limitations on truckloads based on the type of axles. The Federal guidelines are the same as Texas’ limitations for single and tandem axle trucks. Steer axles may only carry up to 12,000 pounds, while drive axles can carry no more than 34,000 pounds.
Federal guidelines also specify truck and freight sizes. Some states will also have policies regarding how large a truck and its load can be before it’s considered oversized. In general, a truck over 8.6 feet wide, 13.6 feet tall, or 53 feet long is regarded as an oversized load.
Complications Affecting Heavy Haul Transport
Why does it matter how heavy or oversized a truckload is? Heavy haul trucks fundamentally increase the risk of car wrecks and property damage during transport. Unpermitted overweight freight can also incur hefty fines for an unprepared business owner. It is crucial to have an experienced company when moving overweight freight.
Freight Savings With Oceanside Freight
Your business should work with a specialized heavy haul trucking company like Canal Cartage when it comes to container-packed oceanside freight. Our professionals know how to properly load and inspect your shipment while abiding by state and federal size and weight restrictions. You can reduce your overall delivery cost by decreasing the airspace in your container and optimizing how your product is packaged with our heavy haul limits. We reduce your cost by moving more freight per container, allowing for heavier loads on transport. We make sure that your shipment is processed correctly and delivered with precision.
With oversized freight, you can consolidate your oceanside freight containers, which can help save your company money and frustration. For example, if your company is shipping 20 containers a month and you reduce your freight shipping cost with overweight hauling, you will start to see significant savings on your shipping bill over time. When you add up your savings on shipment over 12 months, it becomes substantial savings for any freight company.
Overweight Freight Fines
Yet another reason to rely on heavy haul transportation companies is to avoid fines for overweight shipments. After all, many trucking companies pass these fines onto customers.
For example, if you’re hauling a heavy load from the port of Houston, you could receive the following fines for being overweight without a permit:
- $100–$500 for loads <2,500 pounds overcapacity
- $500–$1,000 for loads 2,500–5,000 pounds overcapacity
- $1,000–$2,500 for loads 10,0001–20,000 pounds overcapacity
- $5,000–$7,000 for loads 20,001–40,000 pounds overcapacity
- $7,000–$10,000 for loads >40,000 pounds overcapacity
These are only the fines for Texas. If you’re shipping a heavy load outside of Texas, check the local DMV’s website for your state’s overweight capacity fines.
What’s Required for Shipping Heavy Loads?
Wrecks, shipment damage, and fines all have one thing in common: they cut into your bottom line. You need to choose the right heavy haul trucking company if you want a good return on your investment.
So, here are the best heavy haul freight abilities to look for in a company you plan on trusting with your overweight freight.
Canal Cartage Company has specialized, lightweight trucks for heavy freight hauling. Our light truck fleet ensures you get the best value when moving your heavy shipment.
Lightweight trucks also ensure that we never pull overweight loads. Our light truck fleet reduces the risk of accidents and damage to your shipment while avoiding potential heavy freight fines.
By now, you may be wondering: why should I hire a heavy haul transport company? Can’t I haul shipments myself?
The Texas DMV requires permits for transporting oversized and overweight loads. You’ll also need permits from the Houston port authority to pick up overweight freight.
Getting access to these permits can be a severe headache. When you work with the professionals at Canal Cartage, we will help take care of all the bureaucracy for you.
Trucks That Can Handle Heavy Loads
Weigh stations don’t just confirm that a shipment is within the weight capacity. They also check to ensure the truck is the right size and structure to haul its freight.
For example, a truck’s tires and brakes must be capable of hauling heavy freight. And some jurisdictions require that oversized trucks utilize safety flags or flashing lights.
Federal law also mandates signage for heavy loads. The exact requirements depend on the size and weight of your load. Signage may include an oversized load banner, pilot cars, or even police escorts.
Always choose companies that specialize in heavy haul transportation, like Canal Cartage company. Our experts have the equipment and the know-how to get the job done on time and within budget.
Take Advantage of Canal Cartage’s Heavy Haul Freight Abilities
Hauling overweight loads requires specialized know-how. Your transportation company of choice should have the right trucks, equipment, and permitting to handle your heaviest shipments.
Are you searching for a logistics company with heavy haul freight abilities? Contact Canal Cartage today to learn more about our services.