Feb 23, 2021 7:30 PM

Authorities: No evidence Tiger Woods was impaired in crash

Posted Feb 23, 2021 7:30 PM
View of of Tiger Woods' vehicle after a violent rollover crash on Tuesday morning  -photo courtesy KTLA
View of of Tiger Woods' vehicle after a violent rollover crash on Tuesday morning  -photo courtesy KTLA

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Tiger Woods was seriously injured Tuesday when his SUV crashed into a median, rolled over and ended up on its side on a steep roadway in suburban Los Angeles known for wrecks, authorities said. The golf superstar had to be pulled out through the windshield, and his agent said he was undergoing leg surgery.

Woods was alone in the SUV when it crashed into a raised median shortly before 7:15 a.m., crossed two oncoming lanes and rolled several times, authorities said at a news conference. No other cars were involved. The 45-year-old was alert and able to communicate as firefighters pried open the front windshield to get him out.

The airbags deployed, and the inside of the car stayed basically intact and that "gave him a cushion to survive the crash," Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva said. Both of his legs were seriously injured, county Fire Chief Daryl Osby said.

They said there was no immediate evidence that Woods was impaired. Authorities said they checked for any odor of alcohol or other signs he was under the influence of a substance and did not find any. They did not say how fast he was driving.

The crash happened on a sweeping, downhill stretch of a two-lane road through upscale Los Angeles suburbs. Sheriff's Deputy Carlos Gonzalez, who was the first to arrive at the wreck, told reporters that he sometimes catches people topping 80 mph in the 45 mph zone and has seen fatal crashes there.

"I will say that it's very fortunate that Mr. Woods was able to come out of this alive," Gonzalez said.

Woods was in Los Angeles over the weekend as the tournament host of the Genesis Invitational at Riviera Country Club, where he presented the trophy on Sunday. He was to spend Monday and Tuesday filming with Discovery-owned GOLFTV, with whom he has an endorsement. A tweet Monday showed Woods in a cart smiling with comedian David Spade.

According to Golf Digest, also owned by Discovery, the TV shoot was on-course lessons for celebrities, such as Spade and Dwyane Wade, at Rolling Hills Country Club.

Woods, a 15-time major champion who shares with Sam Snead the PGA Tour record of 82 career victories, has been recovering from Dec. 23 surgery on his lower back. It was his fifth back surgery and first since his lower spine was fused in April 2017, allowing him to stage a remarkable comeback that culminated with his fifth Masters title in 2019.

He has carried the sport since his record-setting Masters victory in 1997 when he was 21, winning at the most prolific rate in modern PGA Tour history. He is singularly responsible for TV ratings spiking, which has led to enormous increases in prize money during his career. Even at 45, he remains the biggest draw in the sport.

The SUV he was driving Tuesday had tournament logos on the side door, indicating it was a courtesy car for players at the Genesis Invitational. Tournament director Mike Antolini did not immediately respond to a text message, though it is not unusual for players to keep courtesy cars a few days after the event.

Woods feared he would never play again until the 2017 fusion surgery. He returned to win the Tour Championship to close out the 2018 season and won the Masters in April 2019 for the fifth time.

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LOS ANGELES (AP) — Golf star Tiger Woods suffered leg injuries Tuesday in a vehicle rollover in suburban Los Angeles and was undergoing surgery, authorities and his manager said.

Woods was alone in the vehicle and had to be extricated from it, the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department said in a statement. No other cars were involved in the wreck that injured the golfer.

An ambulance took Woods to a hospital in serious condition, authorities said.

“Tiger Woods was in a single-car accident this morning in California where he suffered multiple leg injuries,” said his manager, Mark Steinberg. “He is currently in surgery and we thank you for your privacy and support.”

A KABC-TV helicopter over the wreck showed a car on its side, with its front end heavily damaged just off the side of a road near a hillside. The air bags appeared to be deployed.

There was a second crash when a vehicle that had apparently stopped to help Woods got hit, said Christopher Thomas, a spokesman for the Los Angeles County Fire Department. That wreck was very minor, and no one was hurt.

Woods’ crash occurred shortly before 7:15 a.m. about 20 miles (32 kilometers) south of downtown Los Angeles, on the border of the upscale communities of Rolling Hills Estates and Rancho Palos Verdes, officials said.

Woods was in Los Angeles over the weekend as the tournament host of the Genesis Invitational at Riviera, where he presented the trophy. He was to spend Monday and Tuesday filming with Discovery-owned GOLFTV, with whom he has an endorsement contract. A tweet Monday showed him in a cart smiling with comedian David Spade.

According to Golf Digest, also owned by Discovery, the TV shoot was on-course lessons to celebrities, such as Spade and Dwyane Wade. He did not play.

The 15-time major champion last played Dec. 20 in the PNC Championship with his 11-year-old son, Charlie. He had a fifth surgery on his back, a microdiscectomy, two days before Christmas and gave no indication when he would return. The Masters is April 8-11 and when asked if he would be there during the CBS telecast, Woods replied, “God, I hope so.”

This is the third time Woods has been involved in a car investigation. The most notorious was the early morning after Thanksgiving in 2009, when his SUV ran over a fire hydrant and hit a tree. That was the start of shocking revelations that he had been cheating on his wife with multiple women. Woods lost major corporate sponsorship, went to a rehabilitation clinic in Mississippi and did not return to golf for five months.

In May 2017, Florida police found him asleep behind the wheel of a car parked awkwardly on the side of the road. He was arrested on a DUI charge and said later he had an unexpected reaction to prescription medicine his back pain. Woods later pleaded guilty to reckless driving and checked into a clinic to get help with prescription medication and a sleep disorder.

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LOS ANGELES (AP) — Golf star Tiger Woods suffered leg injuries Tuesday in a vehicle rollover in the Los Angeles area and is undergoing surgery, authorities and his manager said. His condition isn’t yet clear.

Woods had to be extricated from the vehicle with the “jaws of life” tools, the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department said in a statement. No other cars were involved in the wreck that injured the golfer.

Woods was taken to the hospital by ambulance. The vehicle sustained major damage, the sheriff’s department said.

“Tiger Woods was in a single-car accident this morning in California where he suffered multiple leg injuries,” his manager, Mark Steinberg, said. He is currently in surgery and we thank you for your privacy and support.”

A KABC-TV helicopter over the scene of Woods’ accident showed a car on its side with the front end heavily damaged. Air bags appeared to be deployed. The wreckage appeared to be just off the side of a road on a hillside.

Woods, whose first name is Eldrick, was the sole occupant of the vehicle, the sheriff’s department said.

The crash occurred shortly before 7:15 a.m. Tuesday, officials said.

Woods was in Los Angeles over the weekend as the tournament host of the Genesis Invitational at Riviera, where he presented the trophy. He was to spend Monday and Tuesday filming with Discovery-owned GOLFTV, with whom he has an endorsement contract. One tweet on Monday showed him in a cart smiling with David Spade.

According to Golf Digest, also owned by Discovery, the TV shoot was on-course lessons to celebrities, such as Spade and Dwyane Wade. He did not play.

The 15-time major champion last played Dec. 20 in the PNC Championship with his 11-year-old son, Charlie. He had a fifth surgery on his back, a microdiscectomy, two days before Christmas and gave no indication when he would return. The Masters is April 8-11 and when asked if he would be there during the CBS telecast, Woods replied, “God, I hope so.”

This is the third time Woods has been involved in a car investigation. The most notorious was the early morning after Thanksgiving in 2009, when his SUV ran over a fire hydrant and hit a tree. That was the start of shocking revelations that he had been cheating on his wife with multiple women. Woods lost major corporate sponsorship, went to a rehabilitation clinic in Mississippi and did not return to golf for five months.

In May 2017, Florida police found him asleep behind the wheel of a car parked awkwardly on the side of the road. He was arrested on a DUI charge and said later he had an unexpected reaction to prescription medicine his back pain. Woods later pleaded guilty to reckless driving and checked into a clinic to get help with prescription medication and a sleep disorder.

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LOS ANGELES (AP) — Authorities say golf star Tiger Woods was injured in a vehicle rollover in Los Angeles County.

The Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department says Woods had to be extricated from the vehicle with the so-called jaws of life tools. Woods was taken to the hospital with what authorities and his manager said were leg injuries and was in surgery. The vehicle sustained major damage.

Check the Post for additional details as they become available