Evening bike ride raises awareness as more cyclists get on the road

BELLEVUE, Neb. (WOWT) -- More than a hundred bicyclists hit the road Wednesday evening to bring awareness to those they share the road with.

Escorted by Bellevue Police, more than a hundred bicyclists hit the road Wednesday evening for the Ride of Silence, an event aimed at bringing awareness to those with whom they share the road.

The Ride of Silence is a national effort aimed at reducing or eliminating deadly car and bicycle crashes. Those participating want to promote safe riding and driver awareness.

Bellevue Police were on hand Wednesday to help the riders with an escort.

“The Ride of Silence we participate in to provide that awareness and give people hope that cycling is all encompassing,” bicyclist Rafael Llorens said.

Last weekend in Council Bluffs, a car hit and killed a bicyclist. Pottawattamie County investigators are still looking into what happened, but no charges have been made.

According to the Nebraska Department of Transportation, since 2014, at least one person per year has died as a result of a car vs bike accident.

The Bellevue Bicyclist Club invited out Bellevue mayor Rusty Hyke to participate. He said it was his first year.

“Wanted to check it out and see what it’s about, and get the experience,” he said.

Mayor Hyke said he hopes drivers will become less distracted and take a moment more to ensure the distance between the vehicle and the cyclist.

“It's a lot like motorcyclist,” Hyke said. “Bicyclists share the road you have to be cognizant. Gotta pay attention.”