_________ Bill No. _______
Introduced By _______________________________________________________________________________
A Bill for an Act entitled: "An Act increasing the allowable width of a farm vehicle on a highway to 12 feet 6 inches; and amending section 61-10-102, MCA."
Be it enacted by the Legislature of the State of Montana:
Section 1. Section 61-10-102, MCA, is amended to read:
"61-10-102. Width. (1) Except as provided in subsection (2), a vehicle, including a bus, unloaded or with load, may not have a total outside width in excess of 102 inches. This width for buses is allowed only on paved highways 20 feet or more in width.
(2) (a) Subsection (1) does not apply to an implement of husbandry or a vehicle used for hauling hay, moved or propelled
upon the highway during daylight hours for a distance of not more than 100 miles if the movement is incidental to the
farming operations of the owner of the implement of husbandry or the vehicle used for hauling hay. If the implement or
vehicle is more than 12 feet 6 inches wide, it must be preceded by flag vehicle escorts to warn other highway users. This
restriction does not apply to dual-wheel tractors under 15 feet overall width that are used in farming operations. Lights
which that meet the requirements of 61-9-219(4) must be displayed on the rear of the implement of husbandry or vehicle
used for hauling hay. However, if the highway passes through a hazardous area, the implements or vehicles must be
preceded and followed by flag vehicle escorts.
(b) A commercial vehicle that is hauling hay but does not qualify under subsection (2)(a) may be granted a permit subject to the provisions of 61-10-121 through 61-10-127 and the following requirements:
(i) travel during daylight hours only for an oversize shipment of large round bales of hay, whether the vehicle is loaded or with an empty hay rack, up to 144 inches; when empty, a square red or orange flag measuring 12 inches on each side must be attached to each corner of the hay rack; and
(ii) travel day or night for any other shipment of baled hay, whether the vehicle is loaded or with an empty hay rack, up to 114 inches.
(c) Subsection (1) does not apply to a commercial hay grinder moved or propelled upon the highway during daylight hours for a distance of not more than 100 miles if the movement is incidental to operations of the commercial hay grinder. A commercial hay grinder exceeding 102 inches in width must have a permit issued under 61-10-124. If the commercial hay grinder is more than 12 feet wide, it must be preceded by flag vehicle escorts to warn other highway users. Lights that meet the requirements of 61-9-219(4) must be displayed on the rear of the commercial hay grinder. Movement of a commercial hay grinder that does not exceed 138 inches in width may occur on any day of the week, including holidays, and is restricted to movement during daylight hours. Movement of a commercial hay grinder may not exceed the posted speed limit, including the speed limit on an interstate highway.
(3) A safety device that the department determines by rule adopted pursuant to 61-9-504 to be necessary for safe and efficient operation of motor vehicles is not included in the calculation of width provided in subsection (1)."