A commercial vehicle is defined as any vehicle with more than three wheels that is longer than twenty-two (22) feet; or used for transporting commercial goods; or described as a commercial vehicle on its certificate of title; or has an irremovable commercial advertisement or insignia.
The District of Columbia has designated truck and bus routes, which should be used as long as possible until reaching a final destination. DC also identifies where bus travel is restricted and where through truck travel is restricted. A truck restriction means that while the street is closed to through truck traffic, it is still open to local deliveries.
Click here to be taken to a PDF DC Truck & Bus Map.
For information on permits and loading requirements for development in the District, visit the Transportation Online Permitting System.
For information on commercial vehicle enforcement, contact the District Metropolitan Police Department at 311 or at mpd.dc.gov.
To learn the District’s regulations for commercial vehicle licensing and registration, contact the District Department of Motor Vehicles.
Take extra precaution while driving a large vehicle around bicyclists, scooter riders, and pedestrians. Review the driver safety tips.
All curbside commercial vehicle loading zones are metered. Here’s how it works:
To park in a loading zone, a commercial vehicle operator will need to either buy and display a permit on their vehicle or make a mobile payment immediately after parking.
Vehicles will be ticketed if:
The District’s Freight Plan outlines transportation strategies and steps to facilitate future economic growth while balancing the needs between communities and various industries in the District.
The District of Columbia has size and weight restrictions that limit the size of the vehicles that can legally operate on District roadways. For more information about OSOW vehicles in the District, visit the Trucks webpage in the DDOT Compendium.
Unless otherwise posted the maximum dimensional restrictions for vehicles and combinations are as follows:
References after each item below may be found in subdivisions of section 18-25 of the D.C. Municipal regulations.
|Maximum Vehicle Dimensions|
*Note: Combination vehicles will be subject to federal size limitations on interstate highways.
Unless otherwise posted the maximum weight limits for vehicles and combinations are as follows:
|Maximum Vehicle Weights*|
|Weight on any one axle||21,000 pounds [18-2505.1]|
|Weight on any two consecutive axles less than 10 feet apart 34,000 pounds||34,000 pounds [18-2505.5]|
*Note: Combination vehicles will be subject to federal size limitations on interstate highways. You can also find more a more detailed vehicle weight chart in DCMR 18-2505
Oversized/overweight vehicles require a permit to travel within the District of Columbia. The DDOT Online Permitting System, TOPS, allows users to apply for permits to operate oversize and overweight vehicles in the District, including annual tags and single haul permits.
Please note that there are certain limitations that will determine the type of permit available to operators based on the size of the vehicle and/or the load.
The District Department of Transportation operates one vehicle weigh station:
In the District of Columbia, a 53 foot trailer may be operated on the National Network comprised of the following:
Be aware of pedestrians and bicyclists, and follow all posted traffic regulations. District rules are governed by Title 18 of the D.C. Municipal Regulations and strictly enforced by the Metropolitan Police Department.
Commercial vehicles can be ticketed for:
DC DRIVING 101
Before driving around the District, read this list of driving tips and road rules.
DDOT’s Freight Program works to ensure efficient and safe mobility of commercial vehicles traveling in the District of Columbia while mitigating community impacts and preserving transportation infrastructure.
Freight & Urban Delivery Planner
DDOT’s Curbside Management Division manages commercial loading zones (short-term curbside metered parking zones exclusively for commercial vehicles) to provide local businesses a designated space to receive deliveries when off-street options are not available.
Commercial Loading Zones Program Analyst