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Old 02-08-2012, 08:27 PM   #1
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Are there general road restrictions due to Airstream width?

Hi All,

Are there restrictions on some types of roads due to the 8' 5" width of our 25FB?

I seem to recall from years gone by that some states restrict the width of trailers on some types of roads or require special permits.

Thanks,
Jeff
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Old 02-08-2012, 08:34 PM   #2
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Jeff,

I doubt it, or the RV makers would not build them 8 1/2 feet wide. The large Class A motorhomes are 8 1/2 feet wide. I believe that the limits were changed some years ago and the RV manufacturers increased their widths from 8 feet to 8 1/2 feet.

Bill

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Originally Posted by barrettjl View Post
Hi All,

Are there restrictions on some types of roads due to the 8' 5" width of our 25FB?

I seem to recall from years gone by that some states restrict the width of trailers on some types of roads or require special permits.

Thanks,
Jeff
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Old 02-08-2012, 08:39 PM   #3
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I have a 25FB that I have towed 90,000 miles in all of the lower 48 states, and have never had any problems or seen any restriction.

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Old 02-08-2012, 08:42 PM   #4
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Looking at a random selection of State RV regulations, they all give an 8' 6" width maximum, not including things like mirrors and awnings on the outside of the unit.
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Old 02-08-2012, 08:47 PM   #5
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In California, the "general rule" is a 102" maximum, though there is a provision for localities to restrict vehicles in excess of 96". On the Interstates, it is a nonissue, and many states, though not all, have adopted the 102" rule. Having said all that, I have never been stopped for excessive width in any state (knock on wood). I suspect the only time it would realistically arise is in the event of an accident and fingers were being pointed relative to fault.

Happy trails!
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Old 02-09-2012, 07:53 AM   #6
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Great! Thanks for the replies.
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Old 02-09-2012, 09:16 AM   #7
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Tow guide from Boating Magazine

According to the 2012 Boating Magazine towing guide, all but three states have a maximum trailer width of 8 1/2 feet. Hawaii has a 9 foot max and Kentucky is listed at 8 feet. Washington DC is NS (Not Specified).

I presume these regulations apply to travel trailers as well as boat trailers.
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Old 02-09-2012, 09:37 AM   #8
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The 8' limit shown for boat trailers in Kentucky probably does not apply to other trailers as a the standard width of a semi trailer is 102"/8.5'.

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Old 02-09-2012, 09:45 AM   #9
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I don't recall ever seeing roads where a restriction has been posted over this 6" difference.

Sometimes in heavy traffic/switchback areas you'll see restrictions posted for length. There's one restricting total length to 22-24' just north of Two Medicine lakes area on the east edge of Glacier N.P.

Maps for Custer State Park in the South Dakota Black Hills are marked for narrow tunnels up around the Needles area (all trailers prohibited). You can't even have your towing mirrors extended through these ...
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No doubt many other examples exist. The final decision is up to the Pilot in Command.
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Old 02-09-2012, 01:08 PM   #10
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Can't speak for any other state, but in Louisiana, maximum width is 8 feet even, EXCEPT on Interstate highways and US highways where it's 8 feet. So, if you get on a State highway or a city street, the maximum width is only eight feet unless you want to get an oversize permit. Note: The width restriction does NOT include mirrors or other safety equipment, that can stick out farther.

Oversize permits are relatively easy to get, and you don't need an escort vehicle unless you're over 10 feet wide, but you are limited to "daylight hours" and you may be limited to a route specified on the permit.

Here in Louisiana, there are plenty of BIG trailerable boats that supposedly need an oversize permit just to leave the owner's driveway. Usually no one makes an issue of it, but you are subject to additional fines if you break some other traffic law and the officers find out you don't have a permit.
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Old 02-09-2012, 01:41 PM   #11
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I believe that the general width limit was widened to 102" some years ago and the federal highway funds were tied to the change. It's possible that any sources still reporting statewide 96" limits are out of date.

There are isolated examples of roads with height, width, and length limitations due to bridges, tunnels, or tight turns. Most of these are in mountainous areas or in the New England area where the roads are older. It is also possible to encounter width limits due to construction.

But as a practical matter most people will never have the occasion to take an Airstream down a road where a 96" trailer is allowed and will fit but a 102" is not.
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Old 02-09-2012, 02:14 PM   #12
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Check this out:

Towing Laws by State

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Old 02-09-2012, 03:19 PM   #13
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InsideOut,

The information on the towingworld.com site you linked is badly out of date.

For example, in my home state, Minnesota, the weight limit for trailers without breakaway brakes was lowered from 6,000 pounds to 3,000 pounds in 2001. Check the statute itself:

https://www.revisor.mn.gov/statutes/?id=169.67

If you click on the history links you can see the change in 2001.

https://www.revisor.mn.gov/statutes/...9.67&year=2001
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Old 02-09-2012, 03:24 PM   #14
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Sorry Jammer...I didn't create it, just linked to it.

I would say as a "first pass" for most states it's probably still good - but if you have particular questions, it's always going to be better to check with the laws in the individual locales. Seems it's still a pretty good guideline to be used as a "better than nothing" quick reference - but not gospel.

Shari
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