FlatbedSource.com offers professional traffic managers the standard flatbed specifications to assist them in load planning. The standard flatbed is 48′ in length. However, some older flatbeds are only 45′ in length. On the other end, more flatbed manufacturers are offering 53′ aluminum spread-axle flatbeds that allows longer freight to be hauled without causing over-dimensional permits. Plus, the 53′ aluminum trailers are lighter in weight allowing more weight to be hauled. This is a significant advantage for the shipper – more cargo for the same price if you are paying by the mile and not by per hundred weight (cwt).
The picture to the right gives you a good visual of what a standard flatbed trailer specifications actually are. Again, trailer length, width, and type (steel vs. aluminum) vary. The average weight a flatbed can carry is around 46,000 lbs. How much a flatbed can load depends on the load and how the weight is distributed. The D.O.T. that keeps the tractor trailers within the legal weight limits regulate gross weight (80,000 lbs – everything included) to axle weight.
It is critical to know what kind of flatbed you are ordering from your top trucking companies. You CAN get specific but just know that the more specific you get, the less likely the equipment will be at your back door within 24 hrs!