2022 Sturgis Rally Recap

Some in South Dakota call it the great migration. Others just call it a great time. This year, thousands of riders flocked to the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally for live music, parties and some of the best scenic riding around.

The Black Hills are known for scenic winding roads, narrow tunnels and elevation changes. With with a surge of traffic and new riders around Rally time, those roads can quickly become dangerous. Add alcohol and improper riding gear, and you’ve got a recipe for injuries, crashes and rider fatalities that no one wants to see.

Each year the South Dakota Highway Patrol compiles data and shares a report tallying arrests, citations, injuries, fatalities and more so we can track effectiveness of safety efforts, find areas of improvement and plan for more resources in future years.

Nearly 500,000 attendees gathered for the 82nd annual Rally, down slightly from 2021. Though attendance was lower, DUI arrests were up more than 20%. However, other safety stats trended down compared to 2021, including total citations, both non-injury and injury crashes, and fatal crashes.

ItemSturgisRapid City DistrictDistrict TotalLast Year to Date
DUI Arrests11632148122
Misd Drug Arrests10147148151
Felony Drug Arrests8914103112
Total Citations82360714301572
Total Warnings3044224452884319
Cash Seized$4335.00$0.00$4335.00$3658.00
Vehicles Seizes4040
For Drug Poss.4040
For Serial No.0000
Non-Injury Crashes19264550
Injury Crashes34165062
Fatal Crashes1234
# of Fatalities1234

Sturgis law enforcement and Highway Patrol officers spent the week patrolling the roads, maintaining high visibility to discourage unsafe behavior. The South Dakota Office of Highway Safety also promoted messages to both riders and motorists, encouraging the use of safety gear and reminding drivers to share the road.

Every year, it’s our goal to help facilitate a safer Rally and ensure every rider makes it home.

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