Rules for Moving to Oklahoma City--What Movers Can't Move

by Julie DeLong, A-1 Freeman Moving Group

Moving - Moving BoxesAs if moving wasn’t stressful enough, did you know that there are several items your movers cannot move?

When you select a moving company, they should supply you a list of the items that they cannot put on the moving truck to your new residence in Oklahoma City. They are not trying to make your life more complicated, they're complying with the U.S. Department of Transportation statute (49 CFR 100-185) which spells out hazardous materials that are not acceptable to put on a moving van. There are several items on the list of non-transportables that are not hazardous, but that will not tolerate being on a moving van and the moving company will not move.

Since you're a rational law-abiding person, it's possibly never occurred to you that you are actually harboring dangerous explosives wherever you keep your cleaning supplies. You have likely glanced around the garage and pondered about your lawn equipment going on the truck, but there are lots of other things that are considered dangerous and you'll need to be accountable for moving out of the property.

Anything with chemicals is a definite “no” for putting on the truck. This is due to the fact that chemicals have a bad custom of doing bad things if they are combined with different chemicals, which can easily take place in a moving vehicle. A ground rule is that if you can't place the item in your normal trash for collection, it cannot be boxed up and loaded on the moving truck. So not only must you empty the gas tanks on any lawn equipment (mowers, leaf blowers, weed whackers, etc), either use any fertilizers and grass seed or give it to your friends—a little Miracle-gro and a little leaking gasoline can produce a disastrous outcome. And what’s worse—any damages will be your responsibility due to the fact that you were advised what not to put on the truck. It's not the moving company's responsibility to check all your boxes for contraband, so make sure that any hazardous supplies-including old paint, batteries, aerosol cans, charcoal, and paint thinner—are NOT boxed for the moving truck. The ideal thing to do is take them to your local hazardous waste drop-off facility or give them away to someone who can use them.

What not to pack for movingWhat about your houseplants? Food items? Your cat? Believe it or not, a couple people have asked that their pets be put on the moving truck—the answer is a firm no. That the moving company can't move your plants may be a tad more shocking. Long-distance moves create an issue in that states keep a watchful eye on foreign vegetation crossing the state’s borders, and you don't want to inadvertently introduce pests to either the moving truck or your new house. If plants are going more than 150 miles you may need to get a certain permit to move them—so if you are the person who transported in canker worms or aphids, your new state of residence can locate you. As for food items in your cupboard, only box up sealed, non-perishable stuff with a long shelf life. Or, donate your unopened canned items, cereals, and cookies to a local charity, and start fresh at your new house. Trash anything perishable or open, unless you are going to ice down coolers and transport them yourself.

Although your valuables are not hazardous or likely to start an ash borer breach, most moving companies are reluctant to transport jewelry, cash, stock certificates and other valuable items. The liabilities of being misplaced are too big, take them along with you in a carry on, or put them with other essential documents.

Other things you might not think about as being hazardous—nail polish, cleaning supplies, liquid bleach, fire extinguishers—are also not approved to be transported on the moving truck. Again, anything chemical or flammable is not allowed on a commercial truck, so be smart and dispose of or pack those items separately. The best alternative is to properly dispose of these things and get everything new after you've moved, so you'll have brand new cleaning supplies and bleach to go with your brand-new home.