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Public-images-osm logo.svg maxweight
Zeichen 262 - Verbot für Fahrzeuge deren tatsächliches Gewicht eine gewisse Grenze überschreitet (600x600); StVO 1992.svg
permissible maximum actual weight. Edit or translate this description.
Group: Restrictions
Used on these elements
should not be used on nodesmay be used on waysmay be used on areasshould not be used on relations
Useful combination
See also
Status: de facto

Legal access restriction for vehicles that exceed the specified actual weight, especially useful on bridge segments (tagged with bridge=*). Metric tonnes are a default unit, other units must be explicitly tagged. Typical usage is to add this tag to highway=* lines where maxweight limit applies.

Note: for maximum gross weight see maxweightrating=*


Add the tag to a way or area. A number of navigable structures may be tagged with a weight restriction, such as:

If a unit is not specified, the value is assumed to be in tonnes (British English, 'metric tons' in American English). You must explicitly specify the unit if it is not in metric tonnes. See page Units for possible units and format.

If the restriction applies only to some classes of vehicles, way direction, lanes, or time condition, follow maxspeed#Extended tagging.

Vienna Convention on Road Traffic (Nov 8, 1968)

This property relates to Chapter 1, Art. 1 (y) Laden mass means the actual mass of the vehicle as loaded, with the crew and passengers on board;

United States

In most of the United States, weight restrictions are expressed in short tons (abbreviated as "tons", "T", or "t"), which should be tagged as maxweight=### st, and sometimes in pounds (abbreviated as "lbs"), which should be tagged as maxweight=### lbs, but never as metric tons. In Texas, the weight given on signs is always expressed in pounds. (In the past, many mappers converted short tons to pounds and used the lbs suffix even when the signs were expressed in short tons. More recently, the st suffix was introduced for short tons, so that mappers don't have to do arithmetic.[1])

Besides the prima facie restrictions on the signs below, each state has a number of statutory tolerances and exemptions for specific types of cargo, often seasonally.[2] Mappers should focus on the restrictions on the signs and ignore statutory exceptions.

Basic example

bridge from the given example

A small bridge with limited weight

Tags on a road segment representing road on a bridge:

Marking objects without signed max weight

In cases of some objects, for example bridges it may be desirable to tag that place was surveyed and no max weight sign was found. Tag used for this include maxweight=unsigned and maxweight:signed=no.

There is also maxweight=none, but it is misleading as there are also default max weight of vehicles set by law, it is unlikely to find place where one is actually allowed to drive vehicles without any weight limits.

See also

  • maxweightrating=* - for restrictions that are not based on the actual weight but on the gross maximal mass rating of the vehicle. (Legal access restriction for vehicles with a maximum permitted mass above the specified mass in metric tonnes).
  • maxaxleload=* - The legal maximum axleload in metric tonnes.
  • access=* - legal accessibility according to vehicle class or kind of use
  • Conditional restrictions - restrictions depending on a condition.
  • Proposed_features/gross_weight - Proposal to express limitations/restrictions of the acutal weight, weight rating of vehicles and combinations (trailers) and to express conditional restrictions based on weight properties

Examples by sign

with signs around the world:


United States

Federal, state, county, and municipal highway departments post a wide variety of sign designs that indicate a number of different formulae for computing weight restrictions. The most common sign designs are displayed in the following gallery, most of them from state standards.


Caution, pitfall! The signs below are not weight restrictions, but rather restrictions for goods vehicles with a maximum allowed weight above the depicted value, or max weight per axle not per vehicle.

See more examples at Key:maxweightrating and Key:maxaxleload pages.


  2. “Compilation of Existing State Truck Size and Weight Limit Laws”. Federal Highway Administration. February 1, 2017. Retrieved July 6, 2019. 
  3. 3.0 3.1 The NCUTCD has recommended that a future MUTCD standard "Clarify that the single-unit truck silhouette shown in the R12-5 sign shall apply to all single unit vehicles, regardless of the number of axles or shape of vehicle." [1] As of 2019, this recommendation about the single-unit truck symbol has not yet been incorporated into the MUTCD or any state MUTCD, but see the meeting minutes for several state variations on MUTCD R12-5 that express clearer limits than the current national standard.
  5. “Manual of Bridge Inspection” (PDF). Ohio Department of Transportation. 2014. p. 40. 
  6. Waheed, Amjad (August 18, 2016). “Special Hauling Vehicles (SHV) Load Rating Update” (PDF). County Engineers Association of Ohio. p. 15. 
  7. “Implementation of Special Hauling Vehicles in the ODOT Load Rating Process” (PDF). County Engineers Association of Ohio. March 10, 2020. pp. 7–8. 
  8. proposed on tagging mailing list as maxemptyweight=*, later changed proposed key fo reasons listed in

External links

  • "Vehicle Types", Traffic Monitoring Guide, U.S. Federal Highway Administration Office of Highway Policy Information – helpful for interpreting truck symbols on U.S. signs