The sports world received breathtaking news on Tuesday when Tiger Woods, arguably the greatest golfer in history – and one of the greatest athletes of all time – was involved in a car accident.
The injuries Woods sustained in the car accident, while not life threatening, require extensive and intensive surgery. It is uncertain whether they will end their careers. No others were injured in the crash. Woods was the only occupant of his vehicle.
Woods’ injury sparked a barrage of good wishes and prayers, not just from golfers and athletes, but from politicians, actors, and celebrities of all kinds from around the world – expected for one of the most beloved golfers of all time.
Everything you need to know about Woods’ crash is here, including the severity of his injury, what caused him to crash, and more.
MORE: Tiger Woods is fortunate enough to be alive after the crash
What happened to Tiger Woods?
Woods was injured in a car rollover that occurred around 7:12 a.m. PT. The crash happened while driving north on Hawthorne Boulevard on Blackhorse Road in Los Angeles. It occurred on the border between Rolling Hills Estates and Rancho Palos Verdes, about 30 miles south of downtown LA.
Steven Gregory, an iHeartRadio correspondent, was the first to break the news at 11:07 a.m. PT. The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department confirmed Woods was the injured person in a press release from PT at 11:28 a.m., adding that Los Angeles County Lomita Station had responded to the scene.
Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva told reporters at a news conference Tuesday that the emergency services arrived at the scene around 7:18 a.m. PT. Sheriff’s deputy Carlos Gonzalez was the first there. They called the Los Angeles County Fire Department at 7:22 am to get Woods out of his vehicle. Gonzalez said at the same press conference it was best to wait for more emergency responders to arrive instead of trying to remove Woods from the car.
The fire department showed up at 7:28 am and removed Woods from the car. LA Fire Department chief Daryl Osby, who was also part of the press conference on Tuesday, said Woods’ injuries were classified as “trauma-level” as his vehicle rolled several times in the accident. Because of this, the forces decided to move him to Harbor-UCLA Medical Center, the closest hospital with a trauma center.
Woods was transported by ambulance to where he was being operated on.
What is Tiger Woods Injury?
Tiger Woods’ official Twitter account announced an update on the golf star’s status early Wednesday. He had “lengthy surgery” and “sustained significant orthopedic injuries to the lower right extremity”.
According to the release, Woods had crushed open fractures on both his upper and lower portions of his fibula and tibia. They were stabilized with a rod inserted into the tibia; other injuries to the foot and ankle were stabilized with screws and pins. Doctors were also forced to put pressure on his muscles and soft tissues.
Daniel Miller of the Los Angeles Times originally reported, citing someone with knowledge of Woods’ treatment, that the golf star suffered a fractured ankle and two fractures, one of which was a compound fracture.
Latest on Tiger Woods: His injuries included a broken ankle and two broken legs, one of which was compound, according to a source familiar with his treatment. “Lucky to be alive,” says the LA County Sheriff. From the @ latimes team reporting the crash: https://t.co/3sZTsNMmML
– Daniel Miller (@DanielNMiller) February 23, 2021
Woods was reportedly in serious but stable condition when he arrived at Harbor-UCLA Medical Center. ESPN’s Lindsey Thiry reported late Tuesday that doctors ‘first concern was stabilizing Woods’ injuries from both an orthopedic and vascular standpoint. Quoting sources close to the situation, Thiry added that Woods has a “long road to recovery” and multiple surgeries ahead of him in his future.
What caused the Tiger Woods car accident?
Villanueva said Woods’ vehicle was traveling north on Hawthorne Boulevard at “relatively faster than normal” speeds. The section of the road he crashed on – which is particularly steep and winding – has a speed limit of 45 mph.
Villanueva said Woods’ vehicle appeared to be making contact with the median of division and smashed a wooden sign reading “Welcome to Rolling Hill Estates”. It then crossed two lanes to the south, and at this point encountered a curb and trees – barely a telephone pole – before rolling up a causeway several times. The car stopped on its side about 30 meters from the curb. There were no skid marks or signs of braking at the crash site.
The weather is not taken into account when the crash occurs. Villanueva also said respondents saw “no sign of impairment” from Woods at the site and that doctors did not draw his blood to determine if he had alcohol or drugs in his system.
Separately, Villanueva said there will be an investigation into the Woods crash – which could take “days to weeks” – as it resulted in injuries.
What kind of car did Tiger Woods drive?
Woods drove a 2021 Hyundai Genesis GV80, a midsize SUV. The vehicle was made available to him by the Genesis Invitational, as shown by tournament logos on the side of the vehicle. Tiger hosted the tournament at the Riviera Country Club in Pacific Palisades, California – a coastal community in western LA over the weekend. The Associated Press reported that it is not uncommon for players to keep free cars for a few days after the events.
Villanueva told reporters that the front of the SUV was “destroyed” as a result of the accident, but the interior remained intact. If Woods hadn’t buckled up, Villanueva said, his fall would likely have been fatal.
“The interior, the cupboard of the vehicle was more or less intact,” said Villanueva. “The front end was totally destroyed, the bumpers, everything totally destroyed, airbags deployed, all of that. Fortunately, however, the interior was more or less intact, which gave it the pillow to survive in what would otherwise have been a fatal accident. “
Prior to his press conference, the Los Angeles Times sheriff told the Los Angeles Times that Woods was “fortunate enough to be alive.”
Have first responders used the jaws of life?
The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Twitter account incorrectly stated that first responders used the jaws of life to remove Woods from his vehicle. Osby later made it clear that they were using an ax to break through the vehicle’s windshield and a lever bar to remove the seats from Wood’s legs. After removing Woods from the vehicle through the windshield, they placed him on a backboard and transported him to the trauma center by ambulance.
Why was Tiger Woods in Los Angeles?
Woods stayed in Los Angeles after the 2021 Genesis Invitational to take part in a two-day content shoot with Golf Digest and GOLFTV. The shoot included Woods giving golf lessons to celebrities at Rolling Hills Country Club in Rolling Hills Estates, California.
NBA star Dwyane Wade and actor / comedian David Spade both posted excerpts from their sessions with Woods on social media:
Woods was reportedly out to meet Saints quarterback Drew Brees and Chargers quarterback Justin Herbert for the shoot on Tuesday when the crash occurred. He was reportedly late, which would explain why he was accelerating at the time of his crash.