Sturgis Rally off to a slow start

Monday was a relatively calm rally day for law enforcement.
Published: Aug. 8, 2023 at 9:28 PM MDT
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RAPID CITY, S.D. (KEVN) - It’s still early but so far, this year’s rally is a little lower in attendance than in year’s past.

A main indicator is that traffic was down in three of the first four days of the Sturgis Rally.

Sunday was the only day to show a daily increase over the previous five year average, with a 4.4 percent rise. A rainy and cold Saturday led to a 37 percent decrease over that five-year average for the day.

The Department of Transportation counts traffic coming into Sturgis at nine locations. Overall, for the first four days of this year’s rally, they’ve counted 194,487 vehicles coming in. That’s a little more than 16 percent below the average count over the past five years.

There were no fatal crashes yesterday, the rally total stays at two.

Looking at the law enforcement daily report on the rally, crashes are trending the same as last year, but drug arrests are up.

There were no fatal crashes Monday so the rally total remains at two.

The 26 injury crashes include three serious but not life-threatening crashes on Monday. A rider lost control of his bike on a wet Highway 14A; another biker hit debris on Highway 16 and lost control, hitting a guard rail; and the third serious crash was on Interstate 90 near mile marker 53 when a rider lost control and went into a ditch.

The South Dakota Highway Patrol arrested 16 more people for DUI, bringing the rally total to 52. Felony drug arrests climbed from 17 to 35, and misdemeanor drug arrests jumped to 81. The first three days of the rally there were only 46 misdemeanor drug arrests.