Cyclist Says Helmet Saved His Life In Hit-And-Run Crash

Carlsbad Police Searching For Driver Responsible In Crash That Injured Heath Bernstein

Carlsbad police are asking for the public's help in finding a hit-and-run driver that left a North County man in the hospital with serious injuries.

"My recollection of actually getting hit is thankfully not there," said 33-year-old Heath Bernstein, the victim of a hit-and-run driver who crashed into his bike on Highway 101 on Tuesday at about 11 p.m.

"I have five different fractures," Bernstein told 10News from his hospital bed at Scripps Memorial Hospital in La Jolla.

Bernstein and two others were on the last leg of a nighttime ride when a driver in a dark-colored pickup truck crossed two lanes on the highway and hit Bernstein in the bike lane.

"This was so much a deliberate act," Bernstein said.

Dr. Scott Holyoak, who was riding with Bernstein, said, "I turned around and went back, and that's when I saw his bike laying down on the street with his light pointed into the bushes and I knew something had happened."

Though racked with pain, he credits the helmet he was wearing for saving his life.

"It's cracked, and there's just a shell left as the back is completely broken, but it saved my brain from spilling on the ground and having other major issues," said Bernstein.

Bernstein will begin a long and painful road to recovery at Scripps Encinitas Rehabilitation Center starting Saturday.

Meantime, police in Carlsbad hope the public will pass along information about a dark-colored pickup truck with damage to the right side or front.

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