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Old 05-16-2016, 07:18 PM   #1
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Question about length laws

I realize this has been spoken about a few times over the years.. But couldn't find much recent about it.. Ive heard over the last year or so they have started cracking down on rigs over length ..My first question.. One of the potential rig options im looking at (40 foot with 20 foot stacker, 65 foot total)Is over a good hand full of state's laws... there are probably 7 or 8 states that have 60 foot limits ... What are your current experiences on the crack downs.. Is this some rumor? Is it true, but they really are only cracking down on the rigs 10 to 15 foot over? Or are they being very literal with the measurements? In this era of longer rvs with many having tows behind, im really surprised of newer 60 foot laws .... Also MANY states have 40 foot rv limits.. But I see 42 to 45 foot coaches all day ... Is there some law where over 40 foot becomes a coach and not an rv? And what are the extra requirements for licensing/permits... Im sure all these coaches aren't breaking the law in 40 foot states (which again, is many) ... Are there special license requirements for a coach.. Any help on either of these questions will be greatly appreciate. Ty
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Old 05-16-2016, 07:33 PM   #2
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I am almost 72 feet in length, have traveled all over the country from southern CA and FL to Alaska three times, down to the Keys of Florida and up to Ontario CA. across the mid-west a few times and have never been pulled over for being over-length. In fact I have parked next to commercial trucks that now have super-extended sleeper cabs which have been a lot longer than my rig.

I just mind my own business, drive safely and defensively and enjoy the ride.

Don't worry about it. If you don't want to break the law in those states that have 60 foot max then get yourself a coach and a smart car that will be under the 60 feet.

Dr4Film ----- Richard
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Old 05-16-2016, 07:49 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by Troll Killer View Post
I realize this has been spoken about a few times over the years.. But couldn't find much recent about it.. Ive heard over the last year or so they have started cracking down on rigs over length ..My first question.. One of the potential rig options im looking at (40 foot with 20 foot stacker, 65 foot total)Is over a good hand full of state's laws... there are probably 7 or 8 states that have 60 foot limits ... What are your current experiences on the crack downs.. Is this some rumor? Is it true, but they really are only cracking down on the rigs 10 to 15 foot over? Or are they being very literal with the measurements? In this era of longer rvs with many having tows behind, im really surprised of newer 60 foot laws .... Also MANY states have 40 foot rv limits.. But I see 42 to 45 foot coaches all day ... Is there some law where over 40 foot becomes a coach and not an rv? And what are the extra requirements for licensing/permits... Im sure all these coaches aren't breaking the law in 40 foot states (which again, is many) ... Are there special license requirements for a coach.. Any help on either of these questions will be greatly appreciate. Ty
45' coaches are legal in all states (and last I read, all Canadian provinces too now). The problem with websites listing laws is that they're not always current. However, states can restrict long RVs from using certain routes - California does this for certain winding roads.

Over-length for RVs has to be one of the least enforced laws in any state. Its something to worry about in theory, but I've only heard about enforcement in California, and most of that is old and very intermittent. California actually did a study about relaxing the rule under "motorsport exemptions".

I've seen plenty of 45' motorhomes with 30' stackers driving through states with the 60' length laws.

As for licensing, an 45' motorhome is still just an RV. You only need a CDL if you're using it for business purposes. However, your home state can determine other non-CDL licenses might be needed. I think California is the only one that requires a special license over 40', but many require special licenses based on weight. Whatever your home state requires for a driver's license is all you need to worry about, since license recognition is reciprocal (unlike length laws).
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Old 05-16-2016, 07:58 PM   #4
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Drive smart and defensively and you will likely be OK. Most will not pull you over for just being over length. However if you are speeding, cutting lanes or doing something else to attract a patrolman's attention all bets may be off.

I believe if you stay on the interstate you will be able to follow the length laws for interstate traffic. It is only when you are off of the interstate and outside the 2 or 3 mile envelope that allows you to exit a reasonable distance for fuel and food, you are subject to state length laws.
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Old 05-16-2016, 09:24 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by Dr4Film View Post
I am almost 72 feet in length, have traveled all over the country from southern CA and FL to Alaska three times, down to the Keys of Florida and up to Ontario CA. across the mid-west a few times and have never been pulled over for being over-length. In fact I have parked next to commercial trucks that now have super-extended sleeper cabs which have been a lot longer than my rig.

I just mind my own business, drive safely and defensively and enjoy the ride.

Don't worry about it. If you don't want to break the law in those states that have 60 foot max then get yourself a coach and a smart car that will be under the 60 feet.

Dr4Film ----- Richard
The trailer is a requirement .. I want to take small car.. Motorcycle and a few other things... perhaps even a "quad" .. But sincerely appreciate the rest of your input
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Old 05-16-2016, 09:27 PM   #6
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45' coaches are legal in all states (and last I read, all Canadian provinces too now). The problem with websites listing laws is that they're not always current. However, states can restrict long RVs from using certain routes - California does this for certain winding roads.

Over-length for RVs has to be one of the least enforced laws in any state. Its something to worry about in theory, but I've only heard about enforcement in California, and most of that is old and very intermittent. California actually did a study about relaxing the rule under "motorsport exemptions".

I've seen plenty of 45' motorhomes with 30' stackers driving through states with the 60' length laws.

As for licensing, an 45' motorhome is still just an RV. You only need a CDL if you're using it for business purposes. However, your home state can determine other non-CDL licenses might be needed. I think California is the only one that requires a special license over 40', but many require special licenses based on weight. Whatever your home state requires for a driver's license is all you need to worry about, since license recognition is reciprocal (unlike length laws).
Well I think my state (indiana) requires a class B for anything over 26k lbs .... And I can't even find a non commercial option ... Perhaps I didn't look hard enough. Any input? Worse case once I hit the rode I suppose I could always change my residence lol.. Ty for input
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Old 05-16-2016, 09:28 PM   #7
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Drive smart and defensively and you will likely be OK. Most will not pull you over for just being over length. However if you are speeding, cutting lanes or doing something else to attract a patrolman's attention all bets may be off.

I believe if you stay on the interstate you will be able to follow the length laws for interstate traffic. It is only when you are off of the interstate and outside the 2 or 3 mile envelope that allows you to exit a reasonable distance for fuel and food, you are subject to state length laws.
I very well may be doing some state highway traveling... But in general im a very good driver. Never in a hurry. Always allow for plenty of room in front of me (just driving a car) . Always switch lanes with patience .. Dont think that will be an issue. Ty
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Old 05-16-2016, 09:46 PM   #8
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Indiana only requires a special license if your COACH is over 45'. Total length of a non-commercial vehicle is not a consideration.
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Old 05-16-2016, 10:01 PM   #9
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If you get into an accident that is your fault and you are over length, I wonder what your insurance company would have to say? Could they use that to deny the claim?

I plan on hauling a 26' stacker behind our 45' MH. I expect with will be 75' or 76' going down the road. I hope not to find out the answer to the above question.

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Old 05-16-2016, 10:06 PM   #10
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Our Magna manual has a statement that it might not be legal in all areas due to weight or length laws and it's up to the owner to determine legality. But, I didn't worry too much about length/weight limits with the 40' Dutch Star and I still won't with the 45' Magna.
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Old 05-16-2016, 10:17 PM   #11
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I have already asked the above question with my ins. company. They said that unless the exception of length is listed in the policy, an insurance company will cover the accident. It is no different than having been speeding when the accident occurred, or any other moving violation. I am 75' long and travel both interstate and state roads without problems. If traffic starts to build up behind me on the state or county roads, I pull over at the first safe place to do so to let them by.

edit: Last year in St. George, I talked with three rigs with stackers that were over 80' long. They had come from the east coast going to the races in Vegas and then into CA for the finals. No problems on the trip and a $15 Motorsports permit in CA took care of that state. For some reason, LEO tend to overlook length and weight issues with RV's. Don't know why, but they seem to have more important things to enforce.
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Old 05-17-2016, 05:43 AM   #12
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For some reason, LEO tend to overlook length and weight issues with RV's. Don't know why, but they seem to have more important things to enforce.
Not true for those RVer's heading to Glamis Dunes for the weekend in CA.

California CHP sets up check points almost every weekend to hand out tickets to over-length rigs plus any other violation that they can find.

I have never traveled the I-8 corridor in that area and have no intentions on ever doing it.

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Old 05-17-2016, 09:37 AM   #13
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Well I think my state (indiana) requires a class B for anything over 26k lbs .... And I can't even find a non commercial option ... Perhaps I didn't look hard enough. Any input? Worse case once I hit the rode I suppose I could always change my residence lol.. Ty for input
Is there a reason you could not get a class B license? It probably requires a medical exam every other year. For most people, it would require some time studying the pamphlet too.
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Old 05-17-2016, 10:39 AM   #14
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Is there a reason you could not get a class B license? It probably requires a medical exam every other year. For most people, it would require some time studying the pamphlet too.
The medical certificate on a CDL license is only required if you are driving commercially. You can have, and renew the CDL without getting the medical certificate as long as you can pass the rudimentary eye exam. I used to drive commercially with a class B CDL but have not had a medical certificate for over 12 years. When I went with another RV'er as his co-driver so he could get his non-CDL in Maryland, the inspectors asked to see my license. I showed it to them and then they asked for my medical certificate. I told them "Not required as I'm not driving commercially." I got a grunt in return and they never said another word to me.
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