Our years of experience in the auto freight shipping industry has accumulated a great deal of helpful information! We are sharing this with you on this blog.

Seasonal Frost Laws That Affect Load Weight and Cause Speed Restrictions on Heavy Hauls


Next time you complain about those nasty pot holes and bumps in the road, know that there’s actually certain state laws designed to limit some of that damage caused by heavy vehicles. Commonly referred to as Frost Laws, these seasonsal restrictions on traffic weight limits and speeds are generally enforced in the months of March, April and May and sometimes June. Why? It’s all about thaw weakening during Spring months.

This statement released by the County Road Association of Michigan explains the phenomena perfectly. “As frost melts beneath a paved road, the roadbed turns wet and spongy because water is trapped between the pavement and the remaining ice layer beneath. When trucks and heavy equipment travel over a layer of concrete or asphalt that isn’t well supported beneath, lots of permanent cracks can occur.”

In the state of Michigan, for example, the legal axle weights of vehicles are reduced by up to 35%. More axles are then required to haul a heavy or overweight shipment. Some places may also require that heavy vehicles not exceed 35 miles per hour irregardless of the posted speed limit.

US States With Frost Laws

  • Idaho
  • Iowa
  • Maine
  • Michigan
  • Minnesota
  • Montana
  • Nevada
  • New Hampshire
  • New York
  • North Dakota
  • Ohio
  • Pennsylvania
  • South Dakota
  • Vermont
  • Washington
  • Wisconsin
  • Wyoming

Because we know that restrictions will vary from state to state, and even within a state, and because seasonal restrictions may be posted on very short notice, we always check each state’s laws and freeze-thaw postings before quoting a heavy haul.

Be warned... Other heavy haulers may quote your shipment on a 5 axle truck trailer combination and then try to move that load during the frost law restrictions which costs a lot more than what they accounted for in your original quote. They may try passing those increased prices on to you.

Don’t pay for their mistakes! Call Scott for reliable heavy haul shipping all year round.

Call For Free Quote: 606-669-4402

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