Seasonal Weight Restriction

Seasonal Weight Restrictions

One of the most common business interactions with a county road agency concerns seasonal weight restrictions – sometimes called “frost laws.” 

While roads are concrete and asphalt and look indestructible, they can actually be quite fragile in late winter as frost comes out of the ground.  Even strong late-winter sunlight on the dark paved surface has a significant impact on a road.

As frost melts beneath a paved road, the roadbed turns wet and spongy because water is trapped between the pavement and the remaining ice layer beneath.  When trucks and heavy equipment travel over a layer of concrete or asphalt that isn’t well supported beneath, lots of permanent cracks can occur.

Seasonal weight restrictions in effect.  Road commissions must strike a balance between “business as usual” and protecting the roads, and most of them employ licensed Professional Engineers (PEs) to make these decisions.  Most usually consult neighboring road agencies, as well.

By law, road agencies can enact weight restrictions on any roads not designed as “all season” roads.  All season roads are much thicker and designed to allow trucking year around.

Seasonal weight restrictions lower axle-loading limits and reduce maximum travel speeds for certain vehicles.  Click here for details about seasonal weight restrictions and their effect on axle loading and speed limits.

Note that some limited classes are exempt from these restrictions after a permit is filed.

For spring weight restriction bulletins from MDOT on the Trunkline System, click here.

For MDOT's information resource for commercial trucking, click here.

Weight Restriction

Alcona Alger Allegan Alpena Antrim Arenac Baraga Barry Bay Benzie Berrien Branch Calhoun Cass Charlevoix Cheboygan Chippewa Clare Clinton Crawford Delta Dickinson Eaton Emmet Genesee Gladwin Gogebic Grand Traverse Gratiot Hillsdale Houghton Huron Ingham Ionia Iosco Iron Isabella Jackson Kalamazoo Kalkaska Kent Keweenaw Lake Lapeer Leelanau Lenawee Livingston Luce Mackinac Macomb Manistee Marquette Mason Mecosta Menominee Midland Missaukee Monroe Montcalm Montmorency Muskegon Newaygo Oakland Oceana Ogemaw Ontonagon Osceola Oscoda Otsego Ottawa Presque Isle Roscommon Saginaw Sanilac Schoolcraft Shiawassee St. Clair St. Joseph Tuscola Van Buren Washtenaw Wayne Wexford
Green - no seasonal restrictions in effect
Red - indicates restrictions are in effect
Grey - restrictions are in effect in part of the county
Yellow - restriction status is unknown
County Name In Effect Roads Last Updated
Alcona No Online 1/1/2016
Alger No Online 1/1/2016
Alpena No Online 1/1/2016
Antrim No N/A 1/1/2016
Arenac No Online 1/1/2016
Baraga No N/A 1/1/2016
Barry No Online 1/1/2016
Bay No Online 1/1/2016
Benzie No List 1/1/2016
Berrien No N/A 1/1/2016
Branch No List 1/1/2016
Cass No N/A 1/1/2016
Cheboygan No N/A 1/1/2016
Chippewa No N/A 1/1/2016
Clare No List 1/1/2016
Crawford No N/A 1/1/2016
Delta No N/A 1/1/2016
Dickinson No N/A 1/1/2016
Eaton No N/A 1/1/2016
Emmet No Online 1/1/2016
Genesee No N/A 1/1/2016
Gladwin No List 1/1/2016
Gogebic No N/A 1/1/2016
Grand Traverse No Online 1/1/2016
Hillsdale No Online 1/1/2016
Houghton No List 1/1/2016
Huron No Online 1/1/2016
Ingham No Online 1/1/2016
Ionia No Online 1/1/2016
Iosco No Online 1/1/2016
Iron No N/A 1/1/2016
Jackson No Online 1/1/2016
Kalkaska No List 1/1/2016
Kent No Online 1/1/2016
Keweenaw No List 1/1/2016
Lake No Online 1/1/2016
Lapeer No Online 1/1/2016
Lenawee No Online 1/1/2016
Luce No List 1/1/2016
Mackinac No N/A 1/1/2016
Macomb No N/A 1/1/2016
Manistee No N/A 1/1/2016
Marquette No List 1/1/2016
Mason No N/A 1/1/2016
Mecosta No List 1/1/2016
Midland No N/A 1/1/2016
Missaukee No N/A 1/1/2016
Monroe No List 1/1/2016
Montcalm No List 1/1/2016
Montmorency No List 1/1/2016
Muskegon No N/A 1/1/2016
Newaygo No List 1/1/2016
Oakland No N/A 1/1/2016
Oceana No Online 1/1/2016
Ogemaw No List 1/1/2016
Ontonagon No N/A 1/1/2016
Osceola No List 1/1/2016
Oscoda No List 1/1/2016
Otsego No List 1/1/2016
Ottawa No N/A 1/1/2016
Roscommon No Online 1/1/2016
Sanilac No N/A 1/1/2016
Shiawassee No Online 1/1/2016
St. Joseph No N/A 1/1/2016
Tuscola No List 1/1/2016
Van Buren No N/A 1/1/2016
Wayne No N/A 1/1/2016