77th Sturgis Motorcycle Rally Kicks Off, 600,000 Bikers Expected

State transportation officials are expecting between 500,000 and 600,000 bikers this year

STURGIS, S.D. (AP) – The annual Sturgis Motorcycle Rally is underway in the Black Hills of western South Dakota.

State transportation officials are expecting between 500,000 and 600,000 bikers this year, and public safety officials are reminding bikers and other motorists to stay alert.

Highway Safety Director Lee Axdahl tells the Rapid City Journal that drivers should use seat belts and common sense, and follow the rules of the road.

In recent years, the most deadly rally was the 75th anniversary event in 2015, which drew a record 739,000 bikers. During that rally, 14 people died in motorcycle wrecks throughout the state.

Last year, the Highway Patrol reported a record-low three deaths.

The rally began its 10-day run Friday.