Maine Revised Statutes

§2353. Weight limits

1. Weight limits.  Except as provided in section 2355, the following gross vehicle weight limits apply to vehicles operating on a public way:
A. For a 2-axle vehicle, 34,000 pounds; [1993, c. 683, Pt. A, §2 (NEW); 1993, c. 683, Pt. B, §5 (AFF).]
B. For a 3-axle vehicle or combination of vehicles, 54,000 pounds; [1993, c. 683, Pt. A, §2 (NEW); 1993, c. 683, Pt. B, §5 (AFF).]
C. For a 4-axle vehicle or combination of vehicles and, except as provided by section 2364, for single unit vehicles of 5 or more axles, 69,000 pounds; [RR 1999, c. 2, §30 (COR).]
D. Except as provided in paragraph E, section 2354, section 2357, subsection 4 and section 2365 for combination vehicles with 5 or more axles, 80,000 pounds; and [RR 1999, c. 2, §33 (AFF); RR 1999, c. 2, §32 (COR).]
E. For a combination of 3-axle truck tractor and tri-axle semitrailer, 100,000 pounds. [1999, c. 580, §6 (NEW).]
[ RR 1999, c. 2, §33 (AFF); RR 1999, c. 2, §30-32 (COR) .]
2. Weight reductions.  The maximum gross vehicle weight permitted for combination vehicles having:
A. Four axles is reduced by 1,000 pounds for each foot the distance is less than 18 feet between the centers of the extreme axles, excluding the steering axle, measured to the nearest foot; or [1993, c. 683, Pt. A, §2 (NEW); 1993, c. 683, Pt. B, §5 (AFF).]
B. Five or more axles is reduced by 2,000 pounds for each foot the distance is less than 24 feet between the centers of the extreme axles, excluding the steering axle, measured to the nearest foot. [1993, c. 683, Pt. A, §2 (NEW); 1993, c. 683, Pt. B, §5 (AFF).]
[ 1993, c. 683, Pt. A, §2 (NEW); 1993, c. 683, Pt. B, §5 (AFF) .]
3. Exception.  Subsection 2 does not apply to vehicles operated on the Interstate Highway System.
[ 1993, c. 683, Pt. A, §2 (NEW); 1993, c. 683, Pt. B, §5 (AFF) .]
4. Axle weight limits.  The following axle weight limits apply.
A. Except as provided in section 2355, a vehicle may not be operated with a gross weight exceeding:
(1) On a single-axle unit, 22,400 pounds;
(2) On a tandem-axle unit, 38,000 pounds; or
(3) On a tri-axle unit, 48,000 pounds. [1993, c. 683, Pt. A, §2 (NEW); 1993, c. 683, Pt. B, §5 (AFF).]
B. A single axle of a tandem-axle unit may not support more than 60% of the total weight supported by that tandem-axle unit, unless neither axle exceeds the weight legally allowed on a single-axle unit of that vehicle. [1993, c. 683, Pt. A, §2 (NEW); 1993, c. 683, Pt. B, §5 (AFF).]
C. A single axle of a tri-axle unit may not support more than 40% of the total weight supported by that tri-axle unit. [1993, c. 683, Pt. A, §2 (NEW); 1993, c. 683, Pt. B, §5 (AFF).]
D. The maximum gross weight of a vehicle or axle may not be increased by the addition of an axle unless it supports at least 50% of the added weight permitted by its addition. [1993, c. 683, Pt. A, §2 (NEW); 1993, c. 683, Pt. B, §5 (AFF).]
E. [2003, c. 166, §11 (RP).]
[ 2003, c. 166, §11 (AMD) .]
5. Maximum tire weight.  A vehicle may not be operated when the load on the road surface is greater than 600 pounds per inch of tire width, manufacturer's rating, except for:
A. Farm trucks transporting potatoes directly from the fields to the place of storage or to a processing facility during the potato harvesting season; or [2005, c. 433, §21 (NEW); 2005, c. 433, §28 (AFF).]
B. A vehicle operating under an overweight permit issued pursuant to section 2381. [2005, c. 433, §21 (NEW); 2005, c. 433, §28 (AFF).]
A tractor, the propulsive power of which is exerted not through wheels resting on the ground but by means of a flexible band or chain known as a movable track, is not subject to this subsection if the portions of track in contact with the surface of the way present plane surfaces.
[ 2005, c. 433, §21 (AMD); 2005, c. 433, §28 (AFF) .]
6. Exemption.  A vehicle modified for the purpose of plowing snow is exempt from the weight limits imposed by this chapter when engaged in or enroute to or returning from plowing snow or in ice control. A vehicle modified for the purpose of plowing snow is exempt from the maximum tire weight provisions of subsection 5 at all times. Any fire-fighting vehicle with its proper equipment that meets the National Fire Protection Association standards is exempt from the gross and axle weight limits imposed by this chapter. Any vehicle engaged in emergency maintenance of a public way is exempt from the weight limits imposed by this chapter.
[ 1997, c. 437, §44 (AMD) .]
7. Exemption; farm vehicles transporting potatoes.  A farm vehicle transporting potatoes from the field to a storage or processing facility during the potato harvesting season is exempt from the axle weight limits and axle weight tolerance restrictions imposed by this chapter, except for the weight limits imposed under section 2355. To be eligible for this exemption, the farm vehicle must be in compliance with the gross weight limits established in this chapter and must have at least 8,000 pounds on the steering axle. This exemption does not apply on the Interstate Highway System, including that portion designated as the Maine Turnpike.
[ 1999, c. 472, §3 (NEW) .]
8. Vehicles within maximum gross vehicle weight limits.  Notwithstanding any provision of this subchapter to the contrary, if a vehicle that exceeds axle weight limits and axle weight tolerance restrictions imposed by this subchapter by less than 5,000 pounds is within the applicable maximum gross vehicle weight limit including tolerances, the fine imposed under this subchapter is reduced by 50%.
This subsection does not apply to vehicles traveling on the Interstate Highway System except that portion of Interstate 95 designated as the Maine Turnpike.
[ 2009, c. 442, §1 (NEW) .]
SECTION HISTORY
1993, c. 683, §A2 (NEW). 1993, c. 683, §B5 (AFF). 1997, c. 437, §44 (AMD). RR 1999, c. 2, §33 (AFF). RR 1999, c. 2, §§30-32 (COR). 1999, c. 472, §3 (AMD). 1999, c. 580, §§5,6 (AMD). 1999, c. 580, §14 (AFF). 2003, c. 166, §11 (AMD). 2005, c. 433, §21 (AMD). 2005, c. 433, §28 (AFF). 2009, c. 442, §1 (AMD).