Geolocation data suggest Lake of the Ozarks’ BikeFest may be a regional coronavirus ‘superspreader.’ These 23 counties should be on alert.

Credit: COVID Alliance (covidalliance.org)

What makes BikeFest a potential coronavirus superspreader event?

© Getty — Missouri motorcycle rally draws thousands weeks after Sturgis outbreak

What geographic areas are at the highest risk from BikeFest?

An analysis of individual-level geolocation data undertaken by the COVID Alliance has found that BikeFest attendees hail from at least 34 states and 13.5% of all U.S. counties. This is in contrast to Sturgis attendees, who were found to have arrived from far and wide, representing all 50 states and 55% of all U.S. counties.

Estimated per-capita attendance for BikeFest (left) and Sturgis (right) — Credit: COVID Alliance (covidalliance.org)
Credit: COVID Alliance (covidalliance.org)
  • Camden County, MO — #1 total attendance & per-capita attendance
  • St. Louis County, MO — #2 total attendance & per-capita attendance
  • Miller County, MO — #3 total attendance
  • Jackson County, MO — #4 total attendance
  • St. Charles County, MO — #5 total attendance
  • Johnson County, KS — #6 total attendance
  • Cole County, MO — #7 total attendance & #6 per-capita attendance
  • Jefferson County, MO — #8 total attendance
  • Boone County, MO — #9 total attendance
  • Greene County, MO — #10 total attendance
  • Morgan County, MO — #11 total attendance & #3 per-capita attendance
  • Madison County, IL — #12 total attendance
  • Pulaski County, MO — #13 total attendance & #8 per-capita attendance
  • Laclede County, MO — #14 total attendance & #5 per-capita attendance
  • Polk County, IA — #15 total attendance
  • Callaway County, MO — #16 total attendance & #9 per-capita attendance
  • St. Louis City, MO — #17 total attendance
  • Clay County, MO — #18 total attendance
  • Franklin County, MO — #19 total attendance
  • Adams County, IL — #20 total attendance
  • Brown County, IL — #4 per capita attendance
  • Moniteau County, MO —#7 per-capita attendance
  • Scott County, IL — #10 per-capita attendance

How was the analysis of BikeFest undertaken?

This analysis makes use of the COVID Alliance Research Platform (CARP) and a geolocation dataset (provided via X-MODE) with 25.8 million unique mobile devices in the USA, including 3,434 anonymized individuals from our sample determined to have attended BikeFest in and around Lake Ozarks, MO.

The official 2020 Lake of the Ozarks’ BikeFest “Passport Ride” Map

How can public health officials leverage this data to protect residents?

To mitigate COVID-19 contagion, public health officials in counties with large numbers of attendees may wish to enhance case-detection and contact-tracing efforts, issue targeted stay-at-home directives for returning attendees, and refine public health messaging campaigns.

Given the data being used, how is individual privacy being protected?

Diagram of the COVID Alliance Research Platform (CARP)

How can academics undertake similar research?

The COVID Alliance has launched a Rapid Request for Proposal (RFP) for qualified academic researchers.

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The Center for New Data

The Center for New Data

A new kind of data nonprofit, born from the pandemic to advance policy research for the public interest. Our programs: Covid Alliance & Observing Democracy.