Law enforcement prepare for annual Sturgis rally

Published: Aug. 3, 2022 at 5:06 PM CDT
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STURGIS, S.D. (Valley News Live) - With only two days until the official start of the 82nd Annual Sturgis Rally, law enforcement is geared up for the hundreds of thousands of visitors rolling into South Dakota.

The Pennington County Sheriff’s Office plans months in advance, working with law enforcement partners around the state. They also bring in temporary deputies.

“You’ll see those deputies especially in our contract towns of Keystone and Hill City and Wall, where we see an increase in tourism traffic,” explains Lt. Chris Hislip with the Pennington County Sheriff’s Office.

In those high-visibility uniforms, they do everything from traffic control to crowd control. Lieutenant Hislip says they try to get ahead of crimes instead of reacting to them.

“That’s the number one thing during the rally is we want to increase our visibility and work on prevention instead of always responding to the emergency itself.”

Hislip says there are some common sense practices that will make everyone’s rally that much safer; look twice, take your time and plan your route.

“Our motorcycle enthusiasts and our folks who are visiting the Black Hills, we ask to obey all laws; do not drive above your ability or skill level; obviously no drugs or alcohol while you’re driving.”

Officials remind drivers to keep an eye out for more motorcycles on the road in the coming days. According to a recent study, motorcycle deaths are up 55% in North Dakota compared to 2019.

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