A Helpful Guide to Over Dimensional Flatbed Shipments


When flatbed shipping dimensions are more than the standard legal size, then the shipment is considered over-dimensional. Shippers have to pay attention to their freight’s weight and dimensions, especially if it will be shipped on an over-dimensional flatbed trailer.

What are flatbed shipping dimensions?

A legal flatbed trailer’s load cannot exceed 8’6 high, 8’6 wide, 48’ long with an average weight around 45,000 pounds, but not more than 80,000 pounds. With traditional flatbed trailers, the driver’s view is not obstructed.

What are over-dimensional flatbed shipments?

Over dimensional flatbed trailers can handle freight as long as 160’ long, 18’ high, 18’ wide and about 200,000 pounds. Over dimensional flatbeds have between 18 and 40 wheels. More often than not, over-dimensional freight obstructs a driver’s view in several ways. In this scenario, certified pilots would be needed to cover the front and rear of the trailer. They would stay in constant communication with the driver to ensure the shipment goes smoothly.

flatbed shipping dimensions

Information shippers must know before obtaining over-dimensional trailer capacity:

  • Exact dimensions
  • Total weight
  • Address of origin and destination
  • Type of cargo
  • Time in transit

If dimensions are off, it could cost the shipper thousands of dollars in transportation fees, especially if the shipment is passing through several state lines. Listing the wrong dimensions or weight could even lead to the use of improper equipment, which can be dangerous and/or lead to even bigger fines.

Rules change for over-dimensional freight as the freight gets bigger or the carrier crosses state lines. The more specific information the shipper can offer to the carrier, the better. Over dimensional flatbed, permits are typically inexpensive but you need to ensure you have the correct ones.

What to Read Next:

To guarantee your over dimensional load is delivered on-time, every time, request a free freight assessment. We have pre-qualified, specialized carriers who have the right equipment for your oversized load. Want help shipping your freight? Contact us now!

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