Golf star Tiger Woods was hospitalized Tuesday morning after a serious accident near Rancho Palos Verdes, the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department said.
Woods was the only occupant of a Genesis GV80 SUV driving north on Hawthorne Boulevard on Blackhorse Road when it crashed just after 7 a.m. The vehicle was badly damaged and Woods had to be removed from the rubble by Los Angeles County firefighters and paramedics, sheriff officials said.
Sources said it had to be removed through the car’s windshield.
“Because of the situation and the way you found the vehicle, he was unable to open the door and get out,” said Henry Narvaez, spokesman for the LA county fire department. “We set him free; We helped him get out of the vehicle. “
Woods was taken by ambulance to Harbor-UCLA Medical Center, where he is in “severe” condition and is being treated for his injuries, the fire department said.
Woods ”suffered multiple leg injuries. He is currently in surgery and we thank you for your privacy and support, ”said his manager, Mark Steinberg.
Aerial photos from the scene of the accident showed Woods’ vehicle lying on its side about 30 meters from the road.
Woods was in Los Angeles to host the Genesis Invitational at the Riviera Country Club, a golf tournament that ended on Sunday. He didn’t play in the event as he was recovering from his fifth back surgery, but said CBS spokesman Jim Nantz in an interview during the finals that he hoped to play in the Masters in April.
“God, I hope so. I have to go there first, ”Woods said in an interview. “A lot of it is based on my surgeons, doctors, and therapists, and getting it right. This is the only back I have; I don’t have much leeway anymore. “
Various reports say Woods was filming for Golf Digest on the golf course on Monday, and both retired NBA star Dwyane Wade and comedian David Spade tweeted that they were playing with him that day.
Law enforcement sources who requested anonymity for not having the authority to speak publicly about the matter told The Times that Woods was traveling at high speed and lost control of the vehicle before crossing the center divider. Wood’s SUV rolled several times before it came to a stop. Officials have not disclosed the cause of the crash.
The crash occurred on a winding, steep stretch of Hawthorne Boulevard, a main road that runs through the Palos Verdes Peninsula, where signs warn trucks to use lower gears when driving downhill. The road was closed on Tuesday morning when MPs investigated.
The sheriff’s deputies, who specialize in accident investigations, will photograph the scene and will measure and detail the wrecks before they are removed. The front end of the SUV was badly damaged and the windshield frame was removed where Woods was pulled out of the vehicle.
Bob Fong, 67, who lives on Blackhorse Road north of the crash site, noticed police cars on Hawthorne Boulevard Tuesday morning and thought, “It must have been a great celebrity who crashed.”
Fong knows how difficult the two turns can be on steep Hawthorne Road – so much so that there are two drainage roads for vehicles to slow down, he said.
Speed bumps are scattered across the hilly neighborhoods.
This isn’t the first car accident Woods has been involved in. When he was pulling out of his driveway in a gated community near Orlando, Florida in 2009, his Cadillac SUV hit a fire hydrant and hit a neighbor’s tree.
In 2017, Woods was arrested in Jupiter, Florida after police officers found him asleep behind the wheel of his car. Woods later said the incident was due to an “unexpected reaction to prescribed medication”.
Times staffer Christina Schoellkopf contributed to this report.