A Guide to Navigating Pennsylvania Car Transport Regulations

Whether you are shipping your vehicle to or from the state of Pennsylvania, you must make sure you abide by vehicle transport regulations. Failure to follow the regulations that govern vehicle transport can cause a myriad of legal trouble, such as having your vehicles and personal effects confiscated. To make sure you follow car transport laws when crossing state lines, you must familiarize yourself with Pennsylvania’s vehicle transport regulations and adhere to them.

Learn What Personal Effects to Transport in Your Vehicle

Before you arrange for car transport in Pennsylvania, you must take note of what types of personal effects are allowed to remain in your car while the car shipping company moves it across state lines. For instance, you will need to remove anything that can be deemed as hazardous, such as gas cans containing gasoline, certain chemicals or anything that is considered flammable. If you must transport any hazardous items during your move, you need to make certain you do so safely. There are federal regulations for transporting hazardous items, and these include:

  • Hazardous materials must be clearly marked and in approved shipping containers.
  • You must ship your hazardous materials with commercial shipment companies that have staff who are trained to handle hazardous materials, as it is illegal for individuals to transport hazardous materials without a commercial license and a hazardous placard.
  • You can transport gas but be mindful that you can only transport up to 440 pounds of gas in gas cans, and you must take measures to guarantee that the cans are leak free.

If you will be transporting firearms across Pennsylvania state lines, there are criteria you must meet before you can allow them to be left in your vehicle. These criteria include:

  • You are legally allowed to possess firearms in the state where you currently reside.
  • You are legally allowed to possess firearms where you will be moving.
  • Your firearm and your ammunition must not be stored together in the same place, such as in the console or glove compartment.

Transporting your other valuables, such as clothing, keepsakes and dishes, is fine.

Ensure Vehicles Comply With Federal Regulations

Before vehicles can be shipped across state lines, they must comply with federal regulations. Cars must pass the emissions test and must meet federal safety standards. If your car has passed an inspection at the DMV, you can transport it across state lines.

Be Mindful of Load Requirements and Federal Vehicle Hauler Regulations

Title 75 has rules about hauling loads, and this includes automobile transport. This law dictates that loads must not extend six feet past the bed in the rear, and they must not extend more than three feet past the front part of the vehicle doing the transporting. If a rear load is longer than four feet, Pennsylvania law requires that a red flag that is 12 inches in diameter be displayed in prominent view where the load ends. When traveling at night, a red light must be displayed in place of the flag.

In addition to following local state laws, car shipping companies must operate in compliance with federal automobile hauler regulations set forth by the Department of Transportation. Automobiles that are loaded onto a trailer must not exceed 50 feet in length, and they cannot be wider than eight-and-a-half feet. Minimum clearance for automobile overhangs must not be less than four inches, and the overall weight of the load must not exceed 80,000 pounds. A single axle cannot carry any more than 20,000 pounds. 

Vehicle haulers must also carry auto transport insurance coverage should any mishaps occur during transport. Drivers who haul vehicles must hold state-issued CDL licenses and pass yearly medical exams to maintain these licenses. Drivers are not permitted to drive more than 11 hours in one day, and they cannot drive more than 60 hours in one week.

Before entering a contract with any car shipping service, ask company staff if they are familiar with both state and federal regulations. Ask what kind of training drivers receive. If you feel like you are having trouble understanding the terms of your vehicle shipping agreement, do not be afraid to go over the terms with an attorney. Your vehicle is a large investment, and you must do everything you can to protect it, and this includes being careful to choose a reliable and trustworthy car shipping service that will follow all rules and regulations.

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