Florida Enhances OS/OW Permitting Policies

- Florida Department of Transportation officials delivered some pleasing news at the SC&RA Annual Conference involving expanded weekend and nighttime movement and improved automated permit analysis. Among the improved harmonization initiatives announced by Veronica “Ronnie” Martin and Paul Clark at the Conference include:
  • Weekend permit travel, formerly allowed only until Saturday and Sunday noon, is now allowed all day Saturday and Sunday, daytime hours for vehicles exceeding 10 feet wide.
  • Allowance of operation of permit loads traveling from/to the Alabama/Florida line, from/to the Pensacola Weigh Stations with Law Enforcement escorts. with a valid permit during nighttime hours on Interstate 10.
  • Effective June 2018, upgraded Automated Permit System with advanced engineering calculations to allow for more routing options for Superloads. This more sophisticated bridge analysis will minimize the number of rejected applications and/or requiring alternate routing.
  • Availability of Vehicle Specific Blanket permits. This allows the hauler to purchase and self-issue an annual permit online. The permit is specific to one vehicle (associated by the VIN).
  • Updated dimensions as to when route surveys are required. The applicant is responsible for verifying adequate vertical (height) and horizontal (length and width) clearances exist on route. No movement shall be made under any permit until the route has been surveyed to verify that the route can accommodate the vehicle and load. A survey letter must be maintained with the load during movement and produced to law enforcement and weight inspectors upon request. The survey letter must be on the hauler’s letterhead and include a signed statement verifying that the route has been surveyed, and that clearances exceed the requested permitted dimension by a minimum of 6 inches for height greater than 15 feet and 2 feet on each side for width greater than 16 feet. The surveyed route and the route shown on the permit must match. Surveying a route prior to movement of the load does not exempt the hauler from being required to obtain a permit prior to any movement. In addition, applications for permits for vehicles and loads with a height greater than 18 feet and/or width greater than 22 feet shall be supported by a survey letter from the hauler.
The Florida Administrative Code can be reviewed here.

These new changes now bring Florida 100 percent in line with AASHTO’s Phase I and II Harmonization Resolutionsincluding: Width, height and length thresholds for escorts; flag size, color and location; days and hours of operation; sign message, color, size and location; lights; number of valid days of permit; permit amendments; holiday restrictions; and type and size of escort vehicles.
For a detailed listing of all the new Florida permitting changes, refer to the “Recent and Pending Changes” section of Florida chapter in the SC&RA State and Province Permit Manual.

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