The first traffic death connected with the 2019 Sturgis Motorcycle Rally involved a man riding a motorcycle 12 miles south of Lead, about 30 miles southwest of Sturgis, on Monday, according to Tony Mangan, Highway Patrol spokesman.
Highway Patrol reports on traffic incidents during the 10-day rally — it began Friday, August 2 — including the Rapid City district as well as the city and campgrounds of Sturgis.
At 3:03 p.m. Monday at the intersection of North Rochford Road and Old Salt Road, about 12 miles south of Lead, a 29-year-old man riding a motorcycle southbound on North Rochford failed to negotiate a right curve, Mangan said in a news release Tuesday.
The bike crossed the centerline, slid into the ditch and the driver was thrown from the bike. He was not wearing a helmet and was pronounced dead at the scene.
His name was not released Tuesday pending notification of relatives.
In the first four days of the Rally last year, two traffic fatalities in the district had been reported, compared with one this year.
There have been 18 crashes causing injuries, compared with 21 for the same period a year ago, Mangan reported.
DUI and serious drug arrests continue at a pace well above 2018, with 72 DUI arrests from 6 a.m., Saturday through 6 a.m., Tuesday; up from 56 a year ago.
Felony drug arrests have totaled 54, up from 32 in 2018 for the first four days.
Total citations handed out were 555, compared with 429 in 2018.
Mangan releases a report on traffic incidents and arrests each day.
Sturgis Rally and city officials expect a bigger crowd this year, of more than 500,000 people, slightly more than in 2018, Rally spokeswoman Christina Steele has told the Capital Journal.