Two riders died in a crash just three miles west of Sturgis on Monday August 10, 2020. This marks the first fatalities of this year’s event. The incident happened on U.S. Highway 14A at mile marker 49, at or around 5:15 p.m., according to the South Dakota Department of Public Safety. 

A 22-year-old man was riding westbound when the report says he failed to negotiate a curve, crossed the center line, and collided with two eastbound bikes. A 55-year-old man riding one of the eastbound bikes was pronounced dead at the scene, while the 22-year-old was airlifted to a Rapid City hospital and later died. The rider of the other eastbound bike, a 60-year-old man, suffered serious but non-life-threatening injuries. All news reports state that none of the three riders wore a helmet at the time.  

This comes after an opening weekend that saw 30 non-fatal crashes and 41 DUIs. Back in 2019, there were three crash deaths, and four in 2018. As of 6 a.m. on Tuesday, August 11, 2020, total crashes for the 2020 event are up to 51, and DUIs are up to 64.  

Local news station KELO reported several comparative statistics between the 2020 and 2019 events, comparing the same time period between the two 10-day events. DUI arrests for 2020 are slightly down: there were 72 last year compared with the 64 this year.  

Both non-injury and injury crash numbers are up for the 2020 rally. While one fatal crash had occurred by this time in the event in both 2020 and 2019, only one person had died in a crash by the same point in 2019, as compared to the two fatalities in Monday’s crash. The 2020 Sturgis rally runs through August 16, and there are four days remaining at the time of writing.  

Sources: KELOArgus LeaderDakota News Now 

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