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Abnormal loads


An abnormal load is a large or heavy load (for example a load with a gross weight exceeding 44 tonnes). A haulier wishing to move an abnormal load in County Durham must notify us at least two clear working days before the intended movement.

Abnormal loads in County Durham

A haulier must notify us if:

  • The height of the load is greater than 5.03 metres (16'6").
  • The gross weight is greater than 44 tonnes.
  • The individual axle weight is greater than 10 tonnes for a single non-driving axle or 11.5 tonnes for a single driving axle.

For each abnormal load movement, the haulier must provide us with the following information:

  • Origin and destination of load (address and postcodes).
  • Dates of load movements.
  • Details of proposed route.
  • Details of load type (for example, crane, excavator etc).
  • Length, width and height of load (and whether the load can be reduced in height).
  • Gross vehicle weight.
  • Individual axle weights, axle spacing and number of wheels per axle.
  • Vehicle registration number.
  • Name, address, telephone number, fax number and email address.

Loads over 147.63 tonnes, 6.1 metres wide, exceeding 30m or a rigid length of 27.4 metres long need special orders from the Department for Transport.

The abnormal loads officer will check the details supplied by the haulier against bridge and weight restrictions for suitability of the route. The haulier may then proceed with the proposed movement unless contacted by the abnormal loads officer who will advise of any restrictions on the route. You must notify us of any alternative routes taken, however the responsibility for this decision lies with the haulier.

We also publish information about roadworks and closures within the county.  This information can be accessed via the roadworks page and will assist in planning the suitability of your proposed routes.

For more information on preferred routes see the County Durham Freight Map.

Contact us
Abnormal loads
03000 267 102
Our address is:
  • Network Management
  • Durham County Council
  • County Hall
  • Durham
  • County Durham
  • United Kingdom
  • DH1 5UQ
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