It's a sure sign of winter and cold weather:  The Minnesota Department of Transportation has increased the load limits on unrestricted highways in the Central Frost Zone.  The changes go into effect on Friday, December 14. The move brings the Central Frost Zone into alignment with the increases that have already occurred in  the North and North-Central Zones.

Once the change goes into effect, vehicles will be allowed to operate up to 10% over the standard legal maximum loads on unrestricted highways while the increase is in effect.  However, trucks must still comply with current registration weight low and no exceed registered gross weight tolerances.

As always - a good rule of thumb for drivers who might want to push the limits of their vehicle is to check with local agencies before increasing the weights on city, county, and township roadways.

The start and end dates for winter load increases are based on how the weather is affecting roadway strength.  MNDOT establishes these days by monitoring  roadway strengths as weather conditions change.  Just like the start date, the end date for winter load increases is variable and drivers should continue to check for updates as the season progresses.