How many workers my I carry on my 1 ton Toyota bakkie before overloading the bakkie?

This is a question which usually scares us as we see the potential dangers of heavily loaded vehicles sharing the road with reckless drivers. We have in the development of the Arrive Alive website often shared news reports of fatalities and injuries to workers involved in accidents while being transported from one place to another. The reality is that many workers – even though it might not be advisable – are transported on bakkies by owners of small businesses to and from construction sites and we need to look at what the law stipulates. We would like to share such a question and answer with the readers:


Please can you tell me the amount of workers, that i can load on my 1 ton toyota bakkie before overloading the bakkie?


A one ton bakkie is generally called that because it has a ton difference between the Tare – empty mass and the GVM – maximum allowable mass. You can see the info on the metal plate in the vehicle.

E.g. 3250 kg – GVM
2250 kg – Tare
1000 kg allowable mass

You must then consider the mass of the driver and passenger, the diesel or petrol (density 0.8 kg per litre) and any other stuff you added to the vehicle like bull bars etc.

Driver mass – 80kg + passenger mass 80 kg + bull bar 20 kg 100 l diesel tank at 80 kg = 240 kg

Subtract the 240 kg from the 1000kg = 760 kg

You can load 760 kg of persons on the back of the vehicle. They may not sit on the edge of the bakkie (enclosed 350mm from seating surface or 900 from standing surface).

There may not be any goods with them on the back unless it’s in a separate compartment and they may not pay for the transport.

Hope this is clear.


Alta Swanepoel and Associates

Also view:

Overloading and Road Safety

When do You need a Professional Driving Permit?

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