Two more people lost their lives on South Dakota roads as the Sturgis motorcycle rally came to a close Sunday.
The South Dakota Department of Highway Safety reported two rally-related accidents Saturday — bringing the total of vehicle fatalities eight for the 2017 rally — nearly triple that of 2016 when three people lost their lives.
Names of the victims have not been released.
At 7:06 a.m. Saturday, an 18-year-old Piedmont man lost control of his motorcycle on US Highway 14A, just two miles west of Sturgis. According to South Dakota Highway Patrol reports, the driver failed to negotiate a right turn, laid his bike down and slid into a guardrail. The driver was wearing a helmet.
At 2 p.m. Saturday, a 29-year-old Gering, NE, woman died after her 2003 Chevy K1500 pickup went off the Highway 79 and rolled. The woman, who was not wearing a seat belt, was ejected from the vehicle and was pronounced dead at the scene. The accident occurred about eight miles east of Hot Springs.
Five other motorcyclists were injured in four other accidents Saturday. Overall, injury accidents and non-injury accidents were up from 2016. Sixty-eight injury accidents were reported during this year’s rally, compared with 50 last year.
Overall rally arrests and citations were on par with last year:
• DUI arrests: 161, compared with 187 in 2016
• Drug arrests: Felony — 46, compared with 50 in 2016; misdemeanor — 171, compared with 176 last year.
• Citations: 1,084, compared with 1,413 last year
• Vehicle seizures: Nine, the same as 2016. All were for drug related offenses.