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Indiana Department of Transportation Overhang Regulations

Updated February 23, 2023 | By Wilson Kehoe Winingham staff

Indiana DOT Overhang Regulations

Objects hanging over a vehicle can pose a serious risk to the driver and other motorists on the road navigating around the overhang. Indiana law states that drivers must obtain a vehicle permit specific to oversize and/or overweight objects being carried, as well as other safety measures including red flags or signals.

What Are Trailer Overhang Laws in Indiana?

According to Indiana Department of Transportation laws, the trucking permit regulations all an object overhang of 3 feet in front of a truck or vehicle, and unlimited overhang in the back as not to exceed 60 feet in overall length. Indiana drivers must obtain a permit if the following factors apply:

  • Objects are over 13 feet 6 inches in height
  • Objects are over 8 feet 6 inches in width
  • Objects and vehicle equal to 80,000 pounds gross vehicle weight

In some cases, heavier or extra-wide loads may require a police escort in addition to obtaining a permit.

How to Acquire an Oversize or Overweight Permit

Applying for a permit to carry oversize or overweight objects on your vehicle or truck in the state of Indiana may be done online at any time. Depending on the type of permit, weight class, and route, additional documentation may be required. Requests for permits are typically approved within one or two business days.

Red Safety Flag Requirements

According to the state of Indiana, whenever a vehicle load extends past the rear by four feet or more, there must be a red flag or red light visible from a distance of at least five hundred feet to the sides and rear of the vehicle. Visible flags are required on all over-width or over-length loads as a signal to other drivers on the road. If flags are not present, the risk of an accident increases. Failure to properly display a visible red flag or signal is a serious violation.

Dangers of Vehicle Overhang

When objects are improperly loaded or are too large and heavy for a truck bed or vehicle, several different accidents can occur as a result. Vehicle overhang can lead to accidents including:

  • Rear end accidents
  • Truck jackknife
  • Shift in balance causing the driver to lose control
  • Loss of cargo
  • Vehicle rollover

Liability of an Accident Caused by Oversized Object

If an overhanging object on a vehicle or a truck violates the state of Indiana regulations and is the cause of an accident, the driver may be liable for damages. Parties found liable may be responsible for one or more of the following damages:

  • Compensatory damages including lost income, property damages, medical care, physical and emotional pain
  • Punitive damages exceeding compensatory damages awarded to punish the responsible party

If you are unsure whether or not you may be liable, the attorneys at WKW can offer legal advice based on your specific case.

Statute of Limitations

The statute of limitations in the state of Indiana is two years from the date of the accident.

Contact an Attorney Today

If you have been involved in an accident as a result of an overhanging object, contact the Indianapolis attorneys of Wilson Kehoe Winingham. The lawyers at WKW can help you get the compensation you deserve. Call 317.920.6400 or fill out an online contact form for a free, no-obligation case evaluation.

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