Tiger Woods involved in serious car crash in California on Tuesday; Hospital chief medical officer: “Open fractures affecting both the upper and lower portions of the right tibia and fibula bones were stabilised”; Woods now “awake, responsive and recovering in his hospital room”
Tiger Woods has undergone a long surgical procedure on his right leg and ankle after suffering multiple open fractures in a serious car crash in California.
Woods is now “awake, responsive and recovering in his hospital room”, a statement on the 15-time major champion’s Twitter page said.
Woods was reported to be conscious and responsive when he was removed from the wreckage by the local fire department early on Tuesday morning before he was rushed to hospital in a “serious condition”.
Woods seriously injured, confirmed details:
- The accident happened shortly after 7am Pacific Time
- Woods was driving, no passengers, no other vehicles involved
- He lost control of his car “at high speed”, the vehicle rolled several times and sustained “extensive damage”
- He was conscious and able to communicate when emergency services arrived at the scene
- Firefighters pulled Woods from the overturned car after smashing the windscreen with an axe
- Woods was taken to Harbor-UCLA Medical Center for surgery
- Woods suffered significant orthopaedic injuries to his “right lower extremity”
- LA County Sheriff said there was no obvious sign that Woods was impaired by drugs or alcohol
In the statement posted on Woods’ Twitter, Anish Mahajan, the chief medical officer and interim CEO of Harbor-UCLA Medical Center said: “Open fractures affecting both the upper and lower portions of the right tibia and fibula bones were stabilised by inserting a rod into the tibia. Additional injuries to the bones of the foot and ankle were stabilised with a combination of screws and pins
“Trauma to the muscle and soft tissue of the leg required surgical release of the covering of the muscles to relieve pressure due to swelling.”
His agent, Mark Steinberg, said: “Tiger Woods was in a single-car accident this morning in California where he suffered multiple leg injuries. He is currently in surgery and we thank you for your privacy and support.”
The LA County Sheriff also stated there was “no obvious sign” that Woods was impaired by drugs or alcohol in his system at the time of the accident, although this could not be confirmed until tests were performed by investigators at the hospital.
Sheriff Alex Villanueva said Woods’ car was travelling at a “relatively greater speed than normal” descending down a hill in an area notorious for a “high frequency of accidents.” There were apparently no skid marks on the road, and it was assumed that the car hit the barrier that separated the carriageways, colliding with a curb and a tree before coming to rest.
The Sheriff’s department had earlier confirmed that Woods’ vehicle had rolled over and sustained “major damage”, while also clarifying that no other vehicle is believed to be involved. Overhead pictures of his car showed clearly the significant damage as it lay on its side on a grass embankment, several yards from the road.
The Sheriff’s statement read: “On February 23, 2021, at approximately 7:12 AM, LASD responded to a single vehicle roll-over traffic collision on the border of Rolling Hills Estates and Rancho Palos Verdes. The vehicle was travelling northbound on Hawthorne Boulevard, at Blackhorse Road, when it crashed. The vehicle sustained major damage.
“The driver and sole occupant was identified as PGA golfer, Eldrick ‘Tiger’ Woods. Mr. Woods was extricated from the wreck by Los Angeles County firefighters and paramedics, then transported to a local hospital by ambulance for his injuries.”
Woods has been in Los Angeles as tournament host for last week’s Genesis Invitational at Riviera Country Club, but he is currently unable to play, or even practice, following further back surgery towards the end of December.
After presenting Max Homa with the winners’ trophy on Sunday, Woods had agreed to two extra days in Los Angeles to take part in media shoots with Golf Digest and GolfTV at Rolling Hills Country Club, where he gave tips to celebrities and accompanied former NBA star Dwayne Wade during a round of golf.
He was heading back to Rolling Hills CC for day two of the shoot when the accident happened.
Woods was also forced to sit out last month’s Farmers Insurance Open, and in an interview on Sunday, the 45-year-old admitted he had not yet set a date for a return to competitive golf, with the Masters just seven weeks away.
“There is no timetable, that’s one of the more frustrating things. I’m just waiting for another MRI to see if the annulus has scarred over and sealed,” Woods said. “Once that happens, then I can dedicate to start doing more.”
When asked about whether he will be able to feature at Augusta National, Woods told CBS: “God I hope so. I’ve got to get there first. A lot of it is based on my surgeons and my doctors and my therapists and making sure that I do it correctly. This is the only back I’ve got, so I don’t have much more wiggle-room left there.
“I don’t know what the plan is. The plan is right now is just to go ahead and get the MRI and see if the annulus has healed. If it has scarred over then we can start progressing.”