Last month’s Sturgis Motorcycle Rally drew upwards of 450,000 attendees to the small city of Sturgis, South Dakota, marking the largest physical gathering since the pandemic began. While many feared the Sturgis would prove to be a “super spreader” event, the true magnitude of the spread is only now becoming known. And it isn’t pretty.
A new study published by health economists Dhaval Dave, Andrew Friedson, Drew McNichols, and Joe Sabia concluded that Sturgis is responsible for 260,000 new cases of COVID-19 – or, 19% of the total number of US cases during the month of August — and $12 billion in new medical care.As the Japanese say, "バカにつける薬はない."*
In the case of Sturgis, attendees generally did not wear face masks and congregated in confined spaces (restaurants, bars, Smash Mouth concerts, etc.) over the course of 10-day event, and did not self-isolate once the event was over. As a result, an estimated 263,708 cases of COVID across the country can now be attributed to the rally. Already, one person who attended the rally has died from the virus, but unfortunately that number is also expected to grow.
*There is no medicine for stupidity.