North Texas cyclists angry after video shows two hit, run over by suspected drunk driver

A retired physician is recovering after he and another cyclist were hit by a suspected drunken driver near DFW Airport in a crash captured on video.

Tom Geppert, 69, suffered injuries including a concussion, a broken rib and road rash, he told KTVT-TV.

The video, which has circulated on social media, shows a speeding driver in a white SUV hit the two bicyclists from behind then appear to stop for about half a second as Geppert’s helmeted head hits the ground before driving forward again and running over Geppert’s thigh.

“Just so lucky it happened to be my thigh, and I think the bike kind of elevated the car a little bit,” Geppert told KDFW.

Geppert was released from the hospital Monday night. He said he couldn’t remember what happened after the initial collision but he has since seen the video.

Watching the video, I’m so angry,” he told KXAS. “It looked like he could’ve stopped before he rolled over me, but then he sped up and went right over me.”

DFW Airport police said that Benjamin Hylander, a 31-year-old man who works for American Airlines’ cargo team, was the driver of the SUV.

Hylander had six empty beer cans in his car and a test showed his blood alcohol concentration was over 0.15, police said. He faces charges including intoxication aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, accident involving injury and driving while intoxicated.

Both injured cyclists, part of a group riding together on North Airfield Drive about 6 p.m. on Monday, were using one lane, which is legal in Texas. Vehicles are required to share the road with cyclists.

Skip Rice wrote in a Facebook post that he was a part of the group from the Grapevine Chain Gang that was cycling together.

“The guy was followed by our cyclists who found him hiding, and without being violent, caused him to return to the scene. Police didn’t chase him down or find him, WE did,” Rice wrote. “I’ve had soda bottles, a can of green beans, rocks, a knife and other objects thrown at me. I’ve been swerved at and brake checked more times than I can remember.”

Rice said the group was riding around DFW Airport because it is an area known to have cyclists who go there around that time, when the traffic is usually light. It was his birthday and they were on a shorter ride than their normal 25 miles.

Rice said he might not normally make a post about something like this because everyone survived and the driver has been arrested and is facing charges. But he felt he needed to because another cyclist was hit on that same road Wednesday.

“That’s 3 people who live in Grapevine, in 3 days,” Rice wrote. “Again from behind, and they were seriously injured requiring surgery, plates, screws, and hospitalization to stabilize her body, and it could have again, been much worse.”

Rice said that while most people seem to be kind and courteous, there are some who celebrate violence toward cyclists.

“In fact, while most people are good and decent, there is a swath of people who, sickeningly, celebrated the incident captured on video,” Rice wrote. “It’s enough to turn your stomach and be very concerned for the state of humanity.”

He said at the same time there has been an “outpouring of sympathy” and asked people to remember that cyclists are allowed to ride on streets as long as they follow the rules of the road and that they are actually discouraged from riding on sidewalks meant for pedestrians. Riding on a sidewalk could endanger not just the cyclists but people walking as well.

He wrote that even many roadside bike lanes are less safe than riding on the street. In his experience, those lanes are usually poorly maintained and even become littered with trash and debris that can make them dangerous to navigate.