With the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally underway, medical experts are concerned that the gathering may cause a spike in coronavirus cases. One doctor says the annual event in South Dakota could become a “super spreader” event.
During an interview with CNN, Dr. Jonathan Reiner addressed the massive public gathering. “People are going to spread out into their communities,” Reiner says. “So this has the potential to be a super spreader event.”
Dr. Reiner says that his primary concern revolves around attendees gathering in close proximity. “You know, I’m less concerned with these folks just riding their bikes through the hills than I am what happens at night in bars and restaurants and hotels,” he said. “And on the streets in close quarters.”
A number of clips from the Sturgis rally surfaced online. As seen in the footage, many attendees at the event appear to refuse to follow current health recommendations. “When you look at the video from Sturgis now, there are very few people wearing masks,” Reiner continued. “And we know that this virus is super contagious and it will spread from person to person. And they will take it back to their homes.”
Dr. Reiner says Americans may want to return to normalcy, but he thinks the time is not right. “We heard a visitor saying they were tired of this and looking to have some fun. Well, the virus doesn’t really care,” Reiner said. “And the virus doesn’t care if they’re tired about this. The virus will infect whoever it can get close to.”
Should South Dakota Have Tried to Cancel the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally?
In conclusion, Dr. Reiner blasted the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally organizers for not shutting down the event. “So this is a ridiculous thing to have in the middle of a pandemic. A quarter-million people coming together.”
“You know, the rest of the world is laughing at us,” he continued. “How could you hold this kind of massive event when we have the highest rate of this virus on the planet. It shows a lack of commitment. A lack of the willingness to do things that are hard. We all want to do fun things but we can’t until it’s safe to do so.”
While Dr. Reiner may disagree with allowing the rally, South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem points to the state’s low COVID-19 numbers. During a recent interview, Governor Noem addressed the rally. Learn more here.