The Sturgis Motorcycle Rally, which brought 500,000 people to South Dakota from all across the country for ten days, has caused a problem for the pandemic.
A new study has confirmed that the 2020 event has caused a “widespread transmission” of COVID-19 across the nation. The rally sparked hundreds of coronavirus cases across several states in the United States, according to WEAU.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention published the study and reported that the rally had been linked to 649 cases in 29 states, including one death.
Despite early concerns of the rally being a potential super spreader event, hundreds of thousands of people were not deterred from attending the rally. The study addressed how South Dakota had few coronavirus restrictions on businesses during the pandemic. That said, no mask mandates were in effect during the rally.
According to the study, 649 cases happened because of the rally, which resulted in one death and 17 hospitalizations. Of those cases, 56% of them were reported in South Dakota, Minnesota, Montana, North Dakota, Nebraska, and Wyoming.
“While the number of cases identified is sizable - 140 cases per 100,000 attendees - it is likely that the true national impact of the Sturgis event is underestimated,” the report said.
The study also mentioned that postponing significant events “may be the most viable option” to maintain control of the pandemic. If postponing an event is not an option, the CDC recommends everyone to wear a face mask and practice social distancing.