Sturgis Rally Vehicle Count Tops 371,000


      The number of vehicles entering Sturgis for the 81st annual Sturgis Motorcycle Rally continues to run double-digits higher than last year, but well below the records set during the 75th anniversary Rally in 2015.

       South Dakota Dept of Transportation counters at 9 locations coming into the city show a 6-day total of 371,038 vehicles, over 51,000 more than last year but 138,000 fewer than in 2015.

       Saturday remains the busiest day so far with over 67,000 vehicles while opening day Friday was the slowest at just over 55,000. The total for Wednesday was the second-lowest at 57,625

       Percentage increases were 11% for Friday, 23.1% Saturday, 17.1% Sunday, 12.6% Monday, 15% Tuesday, and 17.2% on Wednesday.

     The South Dakota Highway Patrol’s Rally Tally continues to show arrests are down while citations and warnings are way up from last year. 

       From 6 AM Saturday to 6 AM Thursday, the Patrol’s Rapid City District made 84 DUI arrests, 16 fewer than last year, while the number of misdemeanor drug arrests fell from 1162 to 108 with felony drug arrests down from 96 to 73.

      Total citations, on the other hand, rose from 876 to 1,046 and total warnings from 2,209 to 2,848. 

      The number of accidents is down by 3 at 73. There have been 31 non-injury accidents, 6 fewer than a year ago, but the 42 injury accidents is up by 3. 

      There’s still officially been only 1 traffic fatality compared to 2 last year, but the State Patrol Tally has historically begun at 6 AM Sunday, so 2 motorcyclists killed last Friday after the Rally started aren’t included in the Patrol’s total.