Road Transport Operations Italy

Italy, officially the Italian Republic, is a country consisting of a peninsula delimited by the Alps and surrounded by several islands. Italy is located in south-central Europe, and it is also considered a part of Western Europe. Italy shares land borders with France, Switzerland, Austria, Slovenia, and the enclaved microstates of Vatican City and San Marino. The country has circa 60 million inhabitants, with its capital city being Rome. 

Cabotage 

UK operators may carry loads to, from or through the country. Loads cannot be carried between third countries unless the third country is another EU member state. Cabotage is permitted, but all cabotage activities must be recorded in a log book which can be obtained from the Ministero delle Infrastrutture et Trasporti. 

Dangerous Goods 

Italy is a party to ADR. It is essential that fully completed ADR documentation is prepared for the movement of dangerous goods. Vehicles transporting Dangerous Goods of Class 1, regardless of the weight of the vehicle have a country-wide prohibition as per the movement restrictions noted below and also at weekends between 1 June and 18 September, from Friday 18:00 to Sunday 24:00. 

For further information, visit the UNECE website at the link below & select the country name applicable - http://www.unece.org/trans/danger/publi/adr/country-info_e.html 

Abnormal Loads 

Vehicles moving indivisible loads that exceed the dimensions noted below will require special authorisation. Applications should be made a minimum of 15 days in advance and it is advisable that this should be undertaken at least 3 weeks prior to movement and to use a local agent as the procedure for anything of a legislative nature in Italy is bureaucratic, complex and time-consuming. 

All abnormal load operators will require a keeper’s certificate to prove ownership of the trailer which must be carried as part of the vehicle documents at all times.
An application form can be downloaded below:

Taxation 

Fuel in vehicle tanks can be imported duty-free. 

Customs

TIR Carnets are accepted for vehicles crossing Italy. ATA Carnets are accepted for certain temporary imports. CMR notes are advised as customs officers require proof of the validity of the arrangement between the parties involved in the movement of the load carried. 

Movement Restrictions 

In Italy, you are not allowed to drive on Saturdays in a vehicle exceeding 7.5 tonnes gross vehicle weight. In July, August and September and applies from 07:00 to 22:00. In the other months from 09:00 to 22:00. 

As there are numerous driving bans/restrictions on Italian roads for the commercial vehicle over 7.5 tonnes, a link to a word document containing all known truck bans with a total of 78 dates, is available for download below:

Vehicle/Load Exemptions 

The precondition for an exemption to the above is a permit from the prefecture granted at least 10 days in advance. For foreign vehicles, the application for the permit can be made by the shipper or consignee at the prefecture of the border province at which entry into Italy is taking place. 

 With the necessary permit, the following vehicles/loads are exempt:

  • Vehicles transporting fuel for distribution and consumption 
  • Vehicles transporting animals for authorised competitions which will take place within the next 48 hours or which took place within the previous 48 hours 
  • Vehicles transporting foodstuffs for the supply of aircraft, or those transporting engines and spare parts for aircraft 
  • Vehicles transporting foodstuffs for the supply of the merchant navy, and which are covered by the appropriate documentation 
  • Vehicles transporting only products for medical use 
  • Vehicles transporting only milk (with the exception of long conservation milk). These vehicles must be equipped with green panels 50cm wide and 40cm high, with a small letter 'd' printed in black and measuring 20cm in height, affixed in a visible manner on both sides and at the rear 
  • Vehicles transporting perishable foodstuffs under the ATP regime 
  • Vehicles transporting perishable goods such as fresh fruit and vegetables, fresh meat and fish, cut flowers, live animals destined for slaughter or arriving from abroad, as well as sub-products following the slaughter of animals, chickens for rearing, fresh dairy produce, fresh milk 

Low Emission Zones 

There are many towns and cities in Italy which have LEZ's in place. For an overview of those cities affected, please use the link below:
https://urbanaccessregulations.eu/countries-mainmenu-147/italy-mainmenu-81  

Road Tolls 

Toll charges in Italy depend on the category of the vehicle and driving distance. The toll price is charged per 100 km. You can find the full price list including the price calculator at the official website - http://www.autostrade.it/autostrade_en-gis/traffico.do  

Simply fill in your departure and arrival destination and the website will automatically calculate the full price of the toll, gate to gate. If you’re driving through Germany, the motorway starts in Brennero, where the Austrian motorway starts in Tarvisio. 

Vehicle categories in Italy are:

Class A: Motorbikes and passenger cars with height under 1.3 metres 

Class B: Vehicles with two axles and height of 1.3 metres and more, and tricycles 

Class III: Vehicles with three axles. 

Class IV: Vehicles with four axles. 

Class V: Vehicles with five and more axles. 

Bridges and Tunnel Tolls 

There are a number of road tunnels and bridges/viaducts in Italy. Similarly to France, the most formidable barrier to negotiate is the Alps which are home to the 2 most famous tunnels being that of the Frejus and Mont Blanc Tunnels. 

  • Frejus (A43) - Connects to A43 M/Way in France 
  • Mont Blanc (A40) - Connects Aosta Valley (I) to Haute Savoie region (F) 
  • Grand St Bernard (A36 (I) and A16 (CH) - E270 - connects Aosta (I) to Belfort (CH) 

Commercial vehicles with engine category Euro 0 and Euro 1 are not permitted in the Frejus Tunnel. 

Vehicle Legal Documentation 

  • Green Card required, plus original vehicle registration docs.
  • A GB plate must be fitted to the rear of the vehicle/trailer.
  • A trailer Registration Certificate is a requirement. To register for a trailer certificate go to  https://www.gov.uk/register-trailer-to-take-abroad 

Maximum Weights & Dimensions 

Height 

4 metres 

Width 

2.55 metres (Fridges 2.6 metres) 

Length 

Artic 16.5 metres Road Train 18.75 metres 

Weight 

Artic 44 tonnes 
Road Train 44 tonnes 
There are also various maximum permitted weights on vehicles, trailers and road trains which are applicable according to the number of axles. 


Safety Equipment

It is compulsory to carry the following items of equipment and/or observe specific rules:

  • First aid kit 
  • Warning triangle should be placed 50 metres behind the vehicle in event of a breakdown 
  • Hi-Vis jackets must be worn if exiting the vehicle - all vehicle crew 
  • Dipped headlights are compulsory at all times in road tunnels and on motorways 
  • Seat belts must be worn 
  • Snow chains must be used where conditions or signage dictates and must be readily available on the vehicle 

Winter tyres are required to be fitted in the provinces of Bolzano, Novara and Verbano from mid-November to the end of March; in Bologna from mid-November to mid-April. The authorities concerned will indicate the requirement on road signage. 

Driver Legal Documents 

  • Full passport required.
  • UK Driving Licence.
  • Letter from employer giving driver permission to drive vehicle (attestation letter and form).
  • AETR Hours rules apply. 

If the UK fully leaves the EU on 31 January 2021, HGV drivers will require travel insurance with healthcare cover 

Speed Limits 

Vehicles Concerned 

Built-Up Areas (kms) 

All-Purpose Roads (kms) 

Expressways / Dual Carriageways (kms) 

Motorways 

Rigid Trucks 3.5 to 12 tonnes 

50 

80 

100 

100 

Rigid Trucks over 12 tonnes 

50 

70 

80 

80 

Dangerous Goods 

30 

50 

50 

80 


Further Reading 

The following links provide guidance and further information, please use the links below. 

British Embassy 

Via XX Settembre 80/a 
00187Rome 
Italy 
Email: [email protected]  
Tel: +39 02 723001/ 0272300234 
Web: https://www.gov.uk/world/organisations/british-embassy-rome 

Transport Organisation 

Confederazione Generale Italiana dei Trasporti e della Logistica (Confetra) 
Via Panama, 62 – 00198 Roma 
Tel: +39 06 8559151  
Web: https://www.confetra.com/