SHERMAN, TX- In 2010, Over 600 cyclists were killed in the U.S. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said 51,000 more were injured while riding their bikes on the road. Wednesday night, local cyclists rolled out a new event to raise awareness of the dangers.
Texomans took on a 9-mile bike ride Wednesday in silence, in honor of cyclists who were injured or killed while sharing the road with motorists. They say they hope Sherman's first "Ride of Silence" will save lives.
Mike Borden rides his bike to work everyday from Collinsville to Sherman. He's seen plenty of close calls, then last year he had his own.
"Early Saturday morning, a guy was heading for the post office and he just didn't see me and he turned in front of me. He made a right turn in front of me and cut me off and we collided," he said.
Borden wasn't seriously hurt but said the accident raised his awareness of the importance of sharing the road with drivers.
"The main thing I have to remember as a cyclist is that I'm invisible. They don't see me and that's the way I had to think when I ride is that they don't see me, so I have to ride defensively," he said.
Charlie Jenkins hopes the first annual "Ride of Silence" in Sherman will help change that.
"We call it the Ride of Silence. It's honoring cyclists who have been hit so it's gonna be a silent ride, everybody's gonna be quiet kinda like a funeral procession per se," he said.
More than 30 cyclists signed up for the "Ride of Silence." Those who have been hit wore red arm bands, others wore black. They rode 9 miles all over Sherman in complete silence, but their message was loud and clear.
"Just pay attention. Just pay attention that we are there and motorists can come up to cyclists very fast. If they're texting or they're on the phone or doing something that takes their attention from it, they can be on one before they realize it," Jenkins said.
"Slow down, hold your line, keep a straight line, we appreciate a wide berth, we appreciate you giving us room," said Borden.
The event is held every third Wednesday in May across the country and now here in Sherman.