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According to the Marine Agency Insurance website, the first two days of the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally saw 23 accidents with a dozen injuries. Not only are there thousands of motorcycles, the party atmosphere can lead to motorcycling under the influence, which may account for some of those accidents. Here are some reminders to stay safe at rallies:
Before you go, get your bike tuned up: oil and filters changed, tires checked, and so on. It’s no fun to sit at the side of the road when you should be enjoying the ride. Remember to take a spare key.
Plan your itinerary, taking into account how many miles you get on a tank of gas. Reserve rooms or camping spots early. Share your itinerary with someone who cares and check in as you travel.
Avoid racing your bike on the streets. It’s tempting to rev your engine, but easy to lose control—even just for a moment—on very crowded streets.
It’s a good idea to wear your helmet, even on very short rides. Laws regarding helmet use vary from state to state, so be aware of the local rules.
Most people at rallies are there to enjoy themselves in the company of other motorcycle enthusiasts. But disputes can get out of hand and lead to fights. It’s best to keep your distance if you see a dispute getting out of hand.
Wherever lots of people congregate, you face the possibility of theft. Consider getting a LoJack and a lock for your bike, and don’t leave loaded saddle bags unattended.
Planning out the events you don’t want to miss and have a local map will help you get the most out of your adventure.