Jump to content
  • 0
MoFro

Narrow Bridges/ Bridges With Weight Limits

Question

I will soon be starting a six month tour of the US and Canada, and will be travelling in a Winnebago Sunstar which is quite big. While I will be on the major routes quite a lot, I also intend to take it off the beaten track. So I’m a little worried about bridges or underpasses with width and weight restrictions.

I have a low clearance POI database, but can’t find anything for narrow bridges or bridges with weight limits. If anyone knows of any (in the US or Canada), I would be most grateful if you could post the coordinates here.

Many thanks.

 

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Recommended Posts

  • 0

MoFro

 

Buy a copy of the Rand McNally "Motor Carriers" Atlas. It will in the first several pages give you bridge heights all over the country state by state and approved routes. The ones not listed...use the toad. All the pages are plastic coated and you can mark on them and then erase. Pricey at 60 bucks on Amazon but it has a pretty good WOW factor too. We just bought one, very nice!

Bill Edwards 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0

The timing is interesting, I got this e-mail yesterday.

"Hi ,

We are working hard to bring you more great POI products, and next to be developed are Weight & Width restricted
bridges. So if you know of any bridges or underpasses with a weight or width restriction (in USA or Canada) then
please send us the coordinates, and help us to create the best database possible for you and your fellow drivers.

We look forward to hearing from you.

Best wishes and many thanks,

LowClearances.com"

It sounds as if your concern has made an impact somewhere.  It will no doubt take time to assemble this information but using this POI it should help.  As travelers that are frequently off the main roads, we can all help expand the POI database by reporting any load limited bridges or narrow bridges that would be of concern.  The way these POI files work is that all limits are compiled, even if they are greater than our own motor home.  When the files are copied to your GPS you can select only the limits that are of concern for your vehicle.  So basically, they will be looking not just for the really low weight limits, all weight limits might be useful to someone.

The limitation of the Rand McNally Motor Carriers atlas is that it covers those roads that are designated as truck routes.  If you are going to depart from truck routes, you are on your own.  We frequently travel smaller roads and the Rand McNally atlas doesn't include any information on those roads.  The POI files are constantly being expanded.  They do cover low clearances in many if not all roads that are non-truck routes.  We have the Road Carriers atlas and Louise uses it regularly.  It helps us to know when we are leaving truck routes so we can weigh the decision to go onto smaller roads.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0

I got that too. I asked them if it would be ready in time for my trip, but they said that it's several months away. Thought I'd see if anyone knew of another source.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0

I as I'm sure you have had those awkward moments, when you have to unhook toad, tie up traffic, because your to high for that RR bridge in the New England area!  Then back up and try to turn around...

I also wish some one would come out with info on dips, have seen too many RV's stuck high center, with most wheels of ground.  Messy!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0

Bill E.  The dips was mostly in Calif. desert area, the low bridges, one was 10', was in NH and Vermont. 

Take a toad for sightseeing, including PA Amish country and up state NY.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0

Every road in the US must have a minimum vertical clearance of 13'6", and all bridges must be able to carry 40 tons, and the minimum road width must be 10'. 

Anything less has to be marked on any and every road that could lead to an obstacle that would be less than these minimums.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0

Tell that to the founders that built all those old bridges in the EAST before there was an established norm. There are countless videos on You Tube of trucks blazing through an underpass with a sign advising of low clearance, leaving their roof skin in a crumpled mess behind. It is what it is supposed to be but not always the way it is. Any thing new certainly, do not count on it if 60 years or older. That is why that Motor Carriers Atlas stacks up, pages of low ceilings abound in the EAST!

 

Thank you Tom and Louise for the Atlas tip, Janet has been hard at it cutting me to 300 miles a day!!! Carl all the credit goes to Tom and Louise.:D

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0
11 hours ago, rsbilledwards said:

Thank you Carl for the encouragement, ahem, we are headed that way in a couple weeks...with a 24 foot trailer! I will keep my eyes wide open!!!;) 

Where are you headed? I was that way last year. Do you have your E-Z Pass yet?

You should be ok if you stay on main roads with the coach. 

Not all low bridges are in the East. I found one 11' 9"on main street in Miles City, Montana. I was trying to get to the RV park we were staying at. Luckily I spotted it in time. Note to Miles City, putting the warning signs 20' before the bridge doesn't really help. I saw the bridge before the sign. Fortunately I stopped short, while sitting there I spotted a road off to the left that made a grade crossing over the tracks so I could get around the Blank Blank bridge. Later that evening when headed out in the toad to find something to eat spotted a guy partly under the bridge in a class A. I couldn't see if he had hit the bridge but there were cops there and they were trying to get traffic out of the way so he could back up. 

Bill 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0
9 hours ago, phylandmac said:

Every road in the US must have a minimum vertical clearance of 13'6", and all bridges must be able to carry 40 tons, and the minimum road width must be 10'. 

Anything less has to be marked on any and every road that could lead to an obstacle that would be less than these minimums.

 

May be true for U.S. highways (don't know), but can tell you first hand that there are certainly state and county roads that do not meet those criteria.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0

There are also a lot of "Old Covered Bridges" out there, that don't come close to height and weight minimum...not talking about historical either! :blink: Thank fully we found them in toad or scooters...mostly in PA.   Also, in Mass., NH around Lebanon area and all over Vermont..:ph34r:  I've never seen a Fed. Law Police!?  Have you?

Carl

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0

Bill,

Aside from getting there, first stop Akron, Ohio for of course a 356  PORSCHE convention. Then down to Hershey for a day and the Motorhome Show. Janet said last night we get to see Falling Water and then down to a chili cook off at the Gettysburg RV Camp Ground. I have old Porsche friends in Harrisburg that I have not seen in years. We will then go up to Sam Talerico's place in Mohnton, PA. and pick up a load of quarter sawn white oak for the log cabin I have ben building. After that, we will just wander back north to Mohawk, New York. We will spend some time here helping another Safari owner with his coach. He has a place for us and will loan us a car to explore the Adirondack mountain country for a bit and then head back to Colorado.

Any tips would be appreciated as this is the first time spending any real time in the three states, Ohio,PA and NY

BillE.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0

Watch for the yellow low clearance signs. Better to have to unhook and turn around then try squeezing under the bridge

I believe that all the Interstate highways have bridges that will clear an 18 wheeler and they are close to 13'6". I had a 5th wheel that was 13' 5" and most definitely watch the yellow warning signs.

With that said, I have the Garman 760LMT GPS system in the MH. I put in the specifications of my MH, width, height, etc. and it will now warn me when there are low clearances.  My RV Height is 12' 4" (No AC up top) so except for those old time bridges I'm pretty safe.  Love the Garman.  It also warns of sharp curves and other things.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0
On 8/18/2016 at 7:31 PM, phylandmac said:

Every road in the US must have a minimum vertical clearance of 13'6", and all bridges must be able to carry 40 tons, and the minimum road width must be 10'. 

Anything less has to be marked on any and every road that could lead to an obstacle that would be less than these minimums.

 

The problem occurs when the warning comes too late to turn around or avoid that hazard.  Posting the height on the bridge itself is the wrong place to put the warning, though it is useful there also.  The warning needs before the last alternate exit so you can drive around without having to back up.  I've come up on low clearances without any warning that a low clearance bridge is ahead.  Low Clearances POI can be set for a warning signal when you are within a set distance. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0
15 hours ago, rsbilledwards said:

Bill,

Aside from getting there, first stop Akron, Ohio for of course a 356  PORSCHE convention. Then down to Hershey for a day and the Motorhome Show. Janet said last night we get to see Falling Water and then down to a chili cook off at the Gettysburg RV Camp Ground. I have old Porsche friends in Harrisburg that I have not seen in years. We will then go up to Sam Talerico's place in Mohnton, PA. and pick up a load of quarter sawn white oak for the log cabin I have ben building. After that, we will just wander back north to Mohawk, New York. We will spend some time here helping another Safari owner with his coach. He has a place for us and will loan us a car to explore the Adirondack mountain country for a bit and then head back to Colorado.

Any tips would be appreciated as this is the first time spending any real time in the three states, Ohio,PA and NY

BillE.

 

I would get an E-ZPass toll tag it will save money and you won't have to go through the slow toll booths. 

One place to visit is the Corning Glass works and the Glass Museum in Corning NY. You are close enough you ought to visit Niagara Falls, take your passport as the best is on the Canadian side. 

Bill

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0

Thank you Wildebill, I will put Corning on the list. We will not see Niagara Falls as we have been there before and yes very good but will do the Canadian side another time. Passport you bet never know!  We looked into the easy pass, it has to be a commercial account! Not really al that big a deal but we are not big on the freeways. Secondary roads are more favored and between the MC atlas and the 760 I think we should do OK. We will be in Harrisburg if we change our minds and find using the Turnpike favorable. I have been on it before with a deadline and nice. I will be pretty long with the trailer toad and the 24 foot trailer so attention will be the order of the day!:) 

BillE

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0
On 8/18/2016 at 9:31 PM, phylandmac said:

Every road in the US must have a minimum vertical clearance of 13'6", and all bridges must be able to carry 40 tons, and the minimum road width must be 10'. 

Anything less has to be marked on any and every road that could lead to an obstacle that would be less than these minimums.

Word hasn't got all DOT's yet!!! Many historic sites have roads that do not meet these requirements yet. I saw a campground in Georgia that advertised such a site on a billboard. no mention of a low overpass even on their billboard. It became a Carl moment, unhook toad,back 200 feet to nearest place wide enough to turn around.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0

Kay. My "moment", more than once, was in 24' to 33', 96" not 102" and low roof height's.  I don't even want to think, what a disaster it would be today! :blink::rolleyes:

Carl

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0

I picked up on that little point, " Historic" as being a  good reference. For us another good point, old coach thing is overall height is under 12 feet, 11' 9" to be precise. I know Carl would not like that inside but we do! I seem to remember Carl saying he was a tall one.

 

BillE

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0

BillE.  6' 8"...Thank the Lord, for skylight in shower! :lol: 10 years ago, I was 6' 91/4", I could reach up and touch your roof...:D:rolleyes:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0

Carl,

You would still have to stoop maybe to your knees in my shower and I have a skylight!  With that kind of height you could probably ski on those things you walk on. I had an uncle my dads twin that was 6' 4" and I thought that was tall. The custom house you built, I assume it has extra tall door jambs? What kind of toad do you drive, sure isn't a PORSCHE or a BMW! Were you any good at basketball?:lol:

 

BillE

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0

Herman.  Bet your shorter now, than you was 20 years ago!  :P

BillE...If I had the 08' Cayenne, it would be in a trailer, along with the 13' Wrangler.  Every Summer in Sweden, I'm being driven around in a modified 750 BMW.  Don't know what they do to the engine, but it weights close to 5.5 tons...they won't let me drive it !  Speedometer goes to 350km or 220mph! :wub:  I was no good and still no good in basketball...I can spell my name! :lol:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0

Carl,

I have a son that is 6'7" and the coach wanted him to play Basketball. He asked if he could still swim. The coach told him no you will be a Basketball player not a 'blankety blank swimmer'. He told the coach no thank you. He went on to set school records and got a swimming scholarship to collage. He had the most beautiful Butterfly you ever saw. He is now the Assistant Parks Director for the City of McKinney and over seeing the building of the new Olympic Pool.

Not to shabby for a kid that told the Basketball Coach, "No Thanks".

One proud Dad,

Herman

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Answer this question...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...

×
×
  • Create New...