An Odessa bicyclist is counting his blessings after he was hurt in a hit and run accident Tuesday morning. The man is speaking out in hopes of getting other drivers to be more alert.
The bicyclist, David Shortes, is out of the hospital and expected to be okay.
David said he bikes the road he was hit on three to four times a week but now he's a little reluctant, especially because this isn't the first bad experience he's had to deal with as a rider.
There's a huge bruise on the side of David's body but he said he's lucky that's all there is.
Around 5:45 on Tuesday morning, David was cycling along FM 3503 in Midland County when he noticed a vehicle in his rear view mirror.
"It was dark but I had lights, reflectors," David said. "Before I knew it, I got hit. He hit me from behind. He clipped me with his mirror. I was in real bad pain."
The mirror broke off from the truck but the driver didn't stop.
David somehow managed to stay on his bike, but the impact shattered his phone.
"I was a little bit worried then about I'm out here in the middle of nowhere, I'm hurt, I don't know if I'm bleeding internally or what," he said. "It was a little bit of panic."
He tried flagging down other drivers but no one stopped so David got back on his bike and pedaled toward town.
About two miles later, he found help and called his girlfriend, Dawn Earp.
Amazingly, David didn't have any broken bones or internal bleeding but his bruise changed fast. Unfortunately, David and Dawn said what happened isn't completely surprising.
They said it's not always a fun ride.
"There are motorists who think its fun to buzz you, come as close as they can without hitting you," David said. "I've had things thrown at me out the car window, lots of verbal abuse."
"Cyclists are well within their rights to ride anywhere in public roadways," Dawn said. "It's kind of frustrating."
They said, in general, most drivers are cautious but cyclists are faced with a choice each time they hit the roads.
"Are you gonna give up your passion, your hobby, your fun because of fear or are you gonna go out there and do what you love to do and so a lot of people choose to go out there knowing the risks," Dawn said.
The couple hopes other drivers will simply be kind and share the road.
"If you see cyclist out there be aware of them, give them space, go around them, be courteous," Dawn said.
The vehicle that hit David is described as a white pick-up and is missing a passenger side mirror.