Road weight restrictions

How to request road weight restrictions and how we enforce them.

Weight restrictions can be imposed for structural or environmental reasons. It is a legal control on a specified vehicle weight or width, mainly on lorries, on certain roads and routes.

The restriction prevents large vehicles from using inappropriate roads, routes and areas in order to:

  • reduce the danger to pedestrians and other road users
  • prevent damage to buildings, roads and bridges
  • preserve the character, amenity and environment of an area
  • reduce and manage congestion on roads.

Requesting a road weight restriction

Requests for new Traffic Regulation Orders for weight restrictions can now be made online. Visit our Apply for a Traffic Regulation Order page for details.

Where a Traffic Regulation Order restricts the use of a road, route or area to certain vehicles, the signing of a recommended alternative route will need to be considered. 

Enforcing a weight restriction

Regulatory signs will be erected on the site to give effect to the Traffic Regulation Order and assist the police in carrying out its enforcement. 

Restrictions with an 'except for access' clause quickly fall into dispute and are notoriously difficult to enforce. However, these are needed to permit Heavy Goods Vehicle (HGV) access to local shops, businesses and residential properties for deliveries and removals.

For this reason, enforcement commands a low priority. Where possible, physical measures should be introduced to prevent any abuse of the restrictions - the installation of signs alone is not always effective.

Restrictions will not be used if there is no suitable alternative route for the displaced traffic.

To contact Sussex Police about enforcing a weight restriction, phone 101 or visit their Operation Crackdown pages. If you are hearing impaired there are also accessible contact methods available.

Last updated:
2 January 2019
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