LONGVIEW (KYTX) - Paul Manking rides his bike throughout Longview for his job.He goes door to door painting addresses on people's curbs.
"I can get to the door a lot quicker on my bike"
But a couple of years ago, a driver hit him.
"I was just coming up the street on my way home, and I was hit by a 17 year old, and got airlifted."
Manking recovered from his injuries but Longview Police say others aren't so lucky.
Just two weeks ago, a 14 year old boy ran a stop sign on his bicycle and had to be transported to a Dallas hospital for life threatening injuries.
Spokesperson Kristie Brian says when it comes to bicycle safety, drivers and cyclists share the responsibility.
"Cyclists got to make sure they are obeying all traffic laws, including riding with traffic, not against it"
And Brian says drivers should pay extra attention, using their mirrors and looking over their shoulders to check for bike riders, the same way they would for someone on a motorcycle.
"The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports that 677 people were killed on bicycles after being struck by an automobile, and 43 were in Texas"
Texas Law doesn't require bicycle helmets but Police say is your first defense.
You should also wear bright colors, and make sure your bicycle has reflectors to increase your visibility to drivers.
The risk won't make manking quit cycling.
"For one thing it is great exercise, and I lie it, no gas, no insurance, and I can put it on the bus":