Coronavirus cases linked to the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally have been confirmed in South Dakota and at least seven other states.
The North Dakota Department of Health said in a tweet Monday that 17 people “who are linked” to the large gathering have tested positive for the virus.
“Those who attended the rally should watch closely for symptoms and get tested at a free ND testing site,” the agency said.
Other cases have been confirmed in Minnesota, Wisconsin, Nebraska, Montana, Wyoming, Washington state and South Dakota, where the 10-day rally was held. There were approximately 103 cases in total linked to the event.
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A spokesperson for the South Dakota Department of Health told NBC News on Tuesday that they had found 40 cases of COVID-19 linked to the event, including three out-of-state cases.
One of those cases is a resident who visited One-Eyed Jack’s Saloon on Aug. 11, public health officials said in a press release.
Last week, a health official from neighboring Minnesota said 15 people who attended the massive rally and festival were diagnosed with coronavirus. One person who tested positive was hospitalized.
Minnesota Department of Health’s infectious disease director Kris Ehresmann said on a conference call with news outlets that 14 of the cases were attendees and one was a volunteer who worked “at a bar. temporary ”.
“We expect to see many more cases associated with Sturgis,” she said on the call. “Thousands of people attended this event, so it’s very likely that we’ll see more transmission. “
In Nebraska, at least seven new cases have been linked to the rally, the Panhandle Public Health District said without providing further details. The agency did not immediately respond to a request for comment on Tuesday.
The rally took place Aug. 7-16 in Sturgis, about 30 miles northwest of Rapid City, and drew attendees on more than 460,000 vehicles, the South Dakota Department of Transportation said. This represented a drop of almost 8% from the roughly 500,000 vehicles in the rally last year.
This year’s rally came under scrutiny after images and videos appeared to show very few attendees wearing masks or observing social distancing. The lead singer of Smash Mouth has been criticized for mocking the coronavirus pandemic as he appeared on stage at the festival.