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​Local Traffic and Obtaining a Letter of Local Determination

Pennsylvania Act 13 of 2012 required PennDOT to create a policy that exempts economically distressed (i.e., at-risk) industries and some local business vehicles in excess of posted weight limits from bonding roadways by issuing Letters of Local Determination (LoLD). The LoLD will be available to two categories of haulers:

  1. Economically distressed businesses (at-risk)
  2. Infrequent haulers (i.e., de minimis – those not likely to damage the roadway)

PennDOT encourages haulers to self-certify as local traffic as described in 67 Pa. Code § 189.2 and the provision of 67 Pa. Code § 189.3(c).

Self-Certification

Vehicles with destinations along posted routes or whose destinations cannot be reached without traveling posted routes may qualify as local traffic and do not have to bond these routes. 

Local Traffic CriteriaExample
Emergency VehiclesFire trucks, ambulances/EMS, police, etc.
School busesN/A
Vehicles making local deliveries or pickupsMail trucks, parcel delivery services (UPS, FedEX, etc.), and any other vehicle making a local delivery or local pickup
Vehicles and combinations of governmental agencies and utilities or their contractors engaged in construction or maintenance on a posted roadway or in a location which can be reached only via a posted roadwayMunicipal vehicles, contracted municipal vehicles, and utility company vehicles performing maintenance or construction on a posted roadway or on another roadway that is only accessible by a posted road
Vehicles and combinations going to or coming from a residence, commercial establishment, or farm located on a posted roadway, or which can be reached only via a posted roadway (self-certification could be required)Freight vehicles with an origin or destination that includes a residential address, commercial address, or farm located on a posted roadway or along another road that is only accessible by a posted road

Exemptions of Permanent Sawmills and Coal (Re)Processing Plants (Updates from Act 89)

Act 89 of November 25, 2014, also included the specific exemption of permanent sawmills and coal (re)processing plants. This allows haulers to travel to those locations without obtaining a permit, local exemption letter, bond, or inspection, and no damages should be assessed to the hauler. All damages are absorbed by the Posting Authority and the exemption cannot be revoked.

Municipal Local Traffic Letter

LoLDs do not apply to municipalities. The municipality may issue a ‘Municipal Local Traffic Letter’ to haulers that satisfies criteria determined by the municipality. Issuing a Municipal Local Traffic Letter can be simpler than passing an ordinance to issue LoLDs. Municipal Local Traffic Letters are not subject to the same restrictions as LoLDs, and municipalities should only use them for internal tracking purposes. Examples of eligible haulers include a logger hauling five (5) loads from a log landing a quarter mile along the posted road or a gas company that pulls three (3) loads of brine a month from established wells. Visit the Municipal Posting and Bonding Page to learn more about municipal postings.