Ready or Not, the 75th Annual Sturgis Motorcycle Rally is Here!

8a1390cb-e272-445f-a6fd-23d4da58e28bThe 75th Annual Sturgis Motorcycle Rally is officially next week from Monday, August 3rd through Sunday, August 9th. If you haven’t already noticed increased traffic on I-90 yet, you will as Rally goers begin pouring into the Black Hills region.

Last year the rally had an estimated attendance of 390,693. Even if you aren’t going up to Sturgis you will be affected by the Rally. Tourist sites from the Badlands to Devil’s Tower and throughout the Black Hills, as well as restaurants, bars, or anything you think of as entertainment will be packed. HAVE PATIENCE!

The Rally is the experience of a lifetime. Visiting exhibitors can show you anything and everything you’d want or need to dress you up or dress up your bike. Or demo virtually every kind of bike on the market – custom, V-Twin or metric. In addition to the bikes there are concerts and races and bike shows, five blocks of Sturgis’s Main Street bikes-only street vibe, organized rides, and custom legends.

If you are new to the area or have never gone to the Rally, check it out, but be prepared for traffic and a lot of people.

Here are a few tips to survive the Rally:

  • If you are going, have a plan. (Have a designated driver!)
  • There are no open containers allowed in Sturgis
  • Pay attention to the signs that say NO PARKING and the curbs that are painted yellow. If you park by these you will be towed and walking to the impound yard to pay to get your ride back.
  • Look out for motorcycles, not all of them are looking out for you
  • Pay attention to speed limits and additional stop signs in all areas
  • Again, HAVE PATIENCE!

South Dakota Motorcycle Driving Laws

  • Every motorcycle must be equipped with at least one but no more than two headlamps..
  • All persons under the age of 18 must wear motorcycle safety helmets that are approved by the South Dakota Department of Transportation.
  • A person riding in an enclosed cab attached to a motorcycle does not have to wear a safety helmet.
  • A motorcycle operator must wear an eye protective device unless the motorcycle is equipped with a windscreen of sufficient height and design that protects the motorcycle operator. When headlights are required to be on, a motorcycle operator cannot wear protective eye devices that are tinted or shaded to reduce the light transmission of the device below 35 percent.
  • Motorcycles must have at least one tail lamp, which when lighted emits a red light visible for a distance of 500 feet.
  • Noise Limits: Every motorcycle must at all times be equipped with a muffler in good working order and in constant operation to prevent excessive or unusual noise.

What will bad behavior cost you? (also factor in costs to your career)

City Ordinances

  • Indecent Exposure – $111
  • Open Container In Public -$61
  • Deposit of Filth – $86
  • Disorderly Conduct – $111
  • Careless Driving – $91
  • City Park Violations – $10
  • City trespassing – $111
  • Dog Running at Large – $56
  • Exhibition Driving – $66
  • Parking in Handicapped Zone – $100
  • Reckless Driving – Custody Arrest
  • Truck Routes Violations – $91
  • Use of Sound Amplification Device – Court Appearance Req.
  • Driving on bike path/sidewalk – $111

State Law

  • Cancelled License – $144
  • Violation of Restricted License – $94
  • Revoked Drivers License – Custody Arrest
  • Furnish Alcohol to Minor – Court Appearance Req.
  • Open Container in Motor Vehicle – $94
  • Possess of Controlled Substance – Custody Arrest
  • Possess of Drug Paraphernalia – $244
  • Possess of Marijuana – Custody Arrest
  • Possess of Substances for High Abuse (Distribution) – Custody Arrest

Juvenile Laws

  • Underage Alcohol Poss/Consump – Court Appearance Req.
  • (Continued) in Motor Vehicle – Court Appearance Req.
  • Underage Purchase of Cigarettes – $69
  • State Motorcycle Laws
  • Carrying Loaded or Uncased Gun – Custody Arrest
  • Cyclists Overtaking in Same Ln – $94
  • Eye Protection Required – $20
  • Helmet Required (under age 18) – $94
  • Illegal Handlebar Height – $20
  • Operation W/O Motorcycle Endorse -$94

 

South Dakota backs off speed limits for Sturgis Rally

SpeedLimit65From KOTA Territory News: Due to the expected increased traffic volumes during the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally, and the anticipated reduced operating speeds, speed limits will be reduced on the following highways effective TODAY (Friday, July 24).

Interstate 90 speed limit will be reduced from 75 mph to 65 mph from west of the Deadwood Avenue Exit 55 in Rapid City to east of the Lazelle Street Exit 30 in Sturgis.

Highways 34 and 79 also have changes that may last well in to mid-August.

Read the full story on kotatv.com: South Dakota backs off speed limits for Sturgis Rally.

The 2014 Sturgis Rally is Here

sturgisThe 74th Annual Sturgis Motorcycle Rally is officially next week from Monday, August 4th through Sunday, August 10th. If you haven’t already noticed increased traffic on I-90 yet, you will as Rally goers begin pouring into the Black Hills region.

Last year the rally had an estimated attendance of 467,338. Even if you aren’t going up to Sturgis you will be affected by the Rally. Tourist sites from the Badlands to Devil’s Tower and throughout the Black Hills, as well as restaurants, bars, or anything you think of as entertainment will be packed. HAVE PATIENCE!

The Rally is the experience of a lifetime. Visiting exhibitors can show you anything and everything you’d want or need to dress you up or dress up your bike. Or demo virtually every kind of bike on the market – custom, V-Twin or metric. In addition to the bikes there are concerts and races and bike shows, five blocks of Sturgis’s Main Street bikes-only street vibe, organized rides, and custom legends.

If you are new to the area or have never gone to the Rally, check it out, but be prepared for traffic and a lot of people.

Here are a few tips to survive the Rally:

  • If you are going, have a plan. (Have a designated driver!)
  • There are no open containers allowed in Sturgis
  • Pay attention to the signs that say NO PARKING and the curbs that are painted yellow. If you park by these you will be towed and walking to the impound yard to pay to get your ride back.
  • Look out for motorcycles, not all of them are looking out for you
  • Pay attention to speed limits in all areas
  • Again, HAVE PATIENCE!

If you think this year is crowded, next year is projected to be even more crowded as the 75th anniversary!

Tornado in the Black Hills: Are you prepared if it were closer?

Keloland Tornado Image

KELOLAND News

If you ever doubted that tornadoes were possible in the Black Hills area, yesterday’s events hopefully changed your mind. A little after 1 PM yesterday, a tornado and funnel clouds were visible from the Ellsworth AFB over the Black Hills.

Today meteorologists with the National Weather Service (NWS) in Rapid City are surveying the damage from the tornado. Based on early damage reports it is believed that it was a weak tornado that hit the Silver City area without much warning. “This tornado shows how quickly a tornado can develop, especially over the Black Hills,” Susan Sanders with the NWS said. (Source: KOTA).

KOTA Territory News

KOTA Territory News

For the rest of the afternoon, the theme of conversation on the news and social media was that no one realized that tornadoes were possible in the Black Hills area.  In fact, while it is not common in the Black Hills area, they do occur in varying strengths.

According to BlackHillsWeather.com, the only tornado touchdown ever recorded in the Rapid City limits took place on Father’s Day in 1967 near Mt. Rushmore Road.

This is a good time to review whether you, your family, or household are prepared for a tornado emergency. Here are a few suggestions from the American Red Cross Tornado Safety Checklist (Download the full checklist (pdf)).

  • During any storm, listen to local news or a NOAA Weather Radio to stay informed about watches and warnings.
  • Know your community’s warning system. Pennington County maintains 33 sirens to warn of impending danger. These sirens are tested at 12 noon on the 1st and 3rd Saturday of each month. If you hear the siren at any other time, please tune into your radio or local news station for more information.
  • Pick a safe room in your home where household members and pets may gather during a tornado. This should be a basement, storm cellar or an interior room on the lowest floor with no windows.
  • Prepare for high winds by removing diseased and damaged limbs from trees. Move or secure lawn furniture, trash cans, hanging plants or anything else that can be picked up by the wind and become a projectile.

ARC_TornadoIf you are outside, watch for tornado danger signs:

  • Dark, often greenish clouds—a phenomenon caused by hail
  • Wall cloud—an isolated lowering of the base of a thunderstorm
  • Cloud of debris
  • Large hail
  • Funnel cloud—a visible rotating extension of the cloud base
  • Roaring noise
  • If you hear the sirens, take cover immediately

Prevention of Suicide – National Prevention Week: Day 5

depressionOn average, one member of the Armed Forces dies by suicide every 25 hours (2013) and for veterans, suicide is the cause of death of an estimated 22 veterans each day. In the United States, suicide is the 10th leading cause of death.

The loss of someone to suicide resonates among family, friends, coworkers, and others in the community. It has been estimated that for each person who commits suicide, 5 to 10 other people are severely affected by the loss. Family and friends may experience a range of painful emotions, such as shock, anger, guilt, and depression. Suicide can occur across demographics, but certain groups are more at risk than the general population. Risk factors for suicide include mental illness, substance abuse, family history of suicide, and previous suicide attempts. Additional risk factors for some people may include a highly stressful life event or prolonged stress from problems like unemployment, serious relationship conflict, or bullying.

Suicide is devastating, but there are resources and information available to help prevent it.

Learn more to be the one who makes a difference.

Other Resources:

  • SuicidehotlineThe National Suicide Prevention Lifeline – A website that provides a downloadable wallet card with the Lifeline phone number and suicide warning signs in English and Spanish, as well as other materials for coping and caring for loved ones. The toll-free Lifeline (1-800-273-TALK [8255]) offers confidential help 24 hours a day to individuals considering suicide and their friends and family.
  • StopBullying.gov – A website that provides information from various government agencies on what bullying is, what cyberbullying is, who is at risk, and how to prevent and respond to bullying.
  • SAMHSA’s Mental Health Services Locator – A resource to help people find mental health services and resources in their communities.
  • National Action Alliance for Suicide Prevention – A public-private collaboration SAMHSA has developed to help promote suicide prevention.
  • The Trevor Project – An organization that promotes acceptance of gay, lesbian, bisexual, and questioning teens and helps to prevent suicide among those youth. The Trevor Helpline, which can be reached at 1-866-488-7386, is a 24-hour toll-free suicide helpline for gay, lesbian, bisexual, and questioning youth.
  • The Suicide Prevention Resource Center – A resource that provides access to the science and experience that can support efforts to develop programs, implement interventions, and promote policies to prevent suicide. Resources include information on school-based prevention programs, a best practices registry, state information and more.