Committee Reports::Report No. 55 - Weight of Goods Vehicles::27 June, 1979::Appendix




Maximum Width (excluding driving mirror, direction indicator but including containers used with the vehicle)

Large tractors (i.e., m.p.vs not constructed to carry a load and over 7¼ tons in weight unladen). Other vehicles.



Other vehicles.

—8’ 2½”


Maximum lateral projection of load on any side.




Maximum overall width of vehicle plus load.

—9’ 6”


Maximum Length

M.p.v. (other than an articulated vehicle or large public service vehicle).



Large Public Service Vehicles

12 metres


Articulated vehicle (including projecting load).



Trailer (excluding drawbar).




Combination of m.p.v. and trailer(s).




Drawbar etc.




Load projecting to the rear.



No. of Trailers

Large Tractor—2 trailers



Other m.p.vs (except cycles)—1 trailer6


Rear overhang

The part of a m.p.v. to the rear of its rear axle, or if it has more than two axles, to the rear of a point midway between the two rearmost axles must not exceed (approximately) sixty per cent of the distance between that axle or point and the front axle.7


Maximum weight laden

(a) On any wheel (2 wheels not more than 18” apart counted as one wheel).

5 tons, if pneumatic tyre, 8 cwt. per inch width of contact area, if tyre of soft or elastic material. 5 cwt. per inch width otherwise.


(b) On any axle (8)

—10 tons.


(c) On any two successive axles not more than 7’ apart.

16 tons (or 18 tons if axles are more than 40” apart and vehicle is authorised to carry 25 tons or more.


(d) Any m.p.v. (9) (including articulated vehicles) or trailer.

2 axled vehicle— 16 tons (10)



3 axled vehicle— 22 tons



4 axled vehicle— 25 tons



4 axles m.p.v.



registered before 1/7/64—28 tons



4 axled m.p.v.



registered after 1/7/64 with front and rear axles 24’ apart— 28 tons.



articulated vehicle with four axles, and front and rear axles more than 35 feet apart— 32 tons.


(e) Combination of a m.p.v. and trailer(s).

—32 tons.


(1) Except a m.p.v. for grass cutting, hedge-trimming or forestry (only in the daytime), a land implement (in the daytime throughout the year, during lighting-up hours from July to October provided it complies with the Lighting of Vehicles Regulations). The limit on loads does not apply to loose agricultural produce.

(2) Except trailers not constructed to carry a load (e.g. a machine) or a trailer constructed and used to carry an “indivisible load” provided the combination of vehicles does not exceed 54’.

(3) The length of a combination of a large tractor and 2 trailers may be up to 72’ (but only used outside a large town). Where a combination exceeds 54 feet a clearly visible sign “over 54 feet” should be carried at the rear. There are special exemptions where a broken-down vehicle is being towed.

(4) Where the distance separating a m.p.v. and trailer exceeds 5’, a white flag or cloth at least 12” sq. should be attached to the drawbar.

(5) Where a load (including an implement of a tractor) projects more than 3’6” to the rear, a red cloth or flag at least 12” sq. or a rigid device of similar area coloured or in 2 colours one of which is red, must be fitted to the load.

(6) This will not prevent the towing of a broken-down vehicle.

(7) Except articulated vehicles, trailers, tractors, rear-steered vehicles, works trucks, cycles and vehicles registered before 1/7/64 which comply with the 1934 regulations.

(8) The weight of an axle means the total weight transmitted by all wheels whose centres can be included between two parallel transverse vertical planes, 40 inches apart, extending across the full width of the vehicle.

(9) Where the drawing component of an articulated vehicle or a m.p.v. exceeds 2 tons in weight unladen or where a trailer or semi-trailer exceeds 1 ton in weight unladen, the unladen weight must be clearly marked on the left side or on the rear.

(10) In the case of an articulated vehicle with a 3 wheel drawing unit, the front single wheel axle may be counted as an axle for this purpose.