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Tags: motorcycle rally | sturgis | south dakota | superspreading

Study: 'Superspreading' Motorcycle Rally Cost Public Health Agencies $12.2B

man driving a motocycle in a parking lot full of motorcycles
A motorcycle rider looks for parking outside the Full Throttle Saloon during the 80th Annual Sturgis Motorcycle Rally in Sturgis, South Dakota, on August 9, 2020. (Michael Ciaglo/Getty Images)

By    |   Tuesday, 08 September 2020 12:51 PM EDT

The Sturgis Motorcycle Rally that took place in South Dakota last month was dubbed a coronavirus “superspreading event” that cost public health agencies $12.2 billion, The Hill reports.

According to a study conducted by the IZA Institute of Labor Economics, cellphone data from the event showed “smartphone pings from non-residents” and “foot traffic at restaurants and bars, retail establishments, entertainment venues, hotels and campgrounds each rose substantially.”

Researchers report the number of coronavirus cases connected to the rally will cost more than $12 billion in public health costs. The number was reached by estimating that $46,000 is spent on each positive COVID-19 case. The study's estimates did not include the cost of any virus-related deaths that stemmed from a positive case at the rally. So far, one death has been traced to the rally.

The 10-day event took place between Aug. 7 and Aug. 16 and attracted more than 365,000 vehicles, according to South Dakota’s Department of Transportation.

Various media outlets reported that event attendees did not wear face masks or practice social distancing.

According to public health officials, 260 coronavirus cases in 11 states have been officially traced back to the rally.

“The Sturgis Motorcycle Rally represents a situation where many of the ‘worst-case scenarios’ for superspreading occurred simultaneously,” the researchers wrote. “The event was prolonged, included individuals packed closely together, involved a large out-of-town population (a population that was orders of magnitude larger than the local population), and had low compliance with recommended infection countermeasures such as the use of masks.” 

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US
The Sturgis Motorcycle Rally that took place in South Dakota last month was dubbed a coronavirus "superspreading event" that cost public health agencies $12.2 billion, The Hill...
motorcycle rally, sturgis, south dakota, superspreading
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2020-51-08
Tuesday, 08 September 2020 12:51 PM
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