COMMACK, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) — Some teenage bicyclists in Long Island say they were almost run over by a truck and have the video to prove it, but police say they were reckless on the road, putting their own lives and others in danger.
The incident happened Thursday in Commack.
Cell phone video shows a group of teens on bikes surround a pickup truck. You can see two bikes lying on the road as the driver and some teens are involved in a confrontation.
Suddenly, the truck pulls away and drives over a bike as one of the teens kicks the back of the vehicle.
Nick Anzalone, the 14-year-old who took the cell phone video, spoke to CBS2’s Natalie Duddridge via Facetime.
“Someone could have got killed,” the teen said. “Some kids that ride with us, they’ll do all, like, stupid stuff and, like, just swerve cars and all of that, and then some of us just want to, like, ride and have fun with our pack and stuff.”
But Suffolk County Police say at least 20 people called 911 reporting a large group of erratic bicyclists near Commack Road and the Northern State Parkway.
Authorities say the driver of the truck called police immediately after the incident, telling them he drove away because he feared for his safety.
“I would have the same reaction as the guy driving the car. Like, why are these kids just coming up to me? A group of them, too. They could vandalize my car. I’d be out, too,” Commack resident James Lauria said.
“I’ll be driving down the road and some kids will, like, do the wheelie or whatever and then they’ll like swerve out of the way while I’m driving,” Commack resident Gregory Gurin said. “And like, if I hit the kid, is that my fault?”
Police say bad bike behavior, like large “ride outs” and playing chicken, is on the rise.
Officials say it’s part of a dangerous trend where teens take videos and post them on social media for likes.
That’s why several towns have been taking action in Suffolk County and Nassau County, which passed laws allowing officers to ticket teenagers and seize the bikes of reckless riders under 16, saying it’s for their own good and to save lives.