Riding Along With Highway Patrol During Sturgis Rally

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It’s a fresh set of eyes at the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally. This is the first time that Trooper Courtney Paul has patrolled the event. So far, her many hours on the highways have met her expectations. 

“I love meeting all the different people. It’s not just South Dakotans here. There’s people from Louisiana, Missouri, just getting to meet and greet all these people has actually been the best part of the rally for me,” Paul said. 

But, she still has work to do. Here she is pulling over a speeder on Highway 79. She brings the driver into the car and makes sure to remind him to slow down and stay safe.

According to the Department’s latest numbers, troopers have handed out 102 more citations compared to last year, despite lower traffic numbers.  On the other hand, there have been significantly fewer fatal crashes and DUI arrests. Paul says that’s a good sign. 

“Yes that’s less work for us troopers but at the same time that means everybody is following the rules and everybody is getting along and that’s really what we’re here for is safety. That’s our number one concern,” Paul said. 

While there are fewer bikes on the road compared to last year, drive through the heart of the rally and you’ll see there’s still a lot to look out for. If you plan to spend time in Sturgis the next few days, Paul has some simple advice. 

“I’d say just slow down, pay attention. That’s all you have to do, and everybody gets to go home safely,” Paul said. 

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