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Tiger Woods crash: What we know

February 24, 2021

Tiger Woods underwent emergency surgery to repair damage to his right leg and ankle, after he was involved in a single-vehicle accident on Tuesday in which his SUV ran off the road.

What we know: The golf star “is currently awake, responsive and recovering in his hospital room” at Harbor-UCLA Medical Center, according to a late-night statement from his team.


  • Anish Mahajan, the hospital’s chief medical officer and interim CEO, said Woods had comminuted fractures (i.e. the bone broke into more than two fragments) affecting the upper and lower portions of his right tibia and fibula.
  • The bones were stabilized by inserting a rod into the tibia, and additional injuries to the foot and ankle bones were stabilized using pins and screws, added Mahajan.

Photo: Carolyn Cole/Los Angeles Times via Getty Images

The crash: The incident happened around 7:15am PT on Hawthorne Boulevard, near the border of Rolling Hills Estates and Rancho Palos Verdes, a coastal Los Angeles suburb.

  • Woods was on his way to meet Drew Brees and Justin Herbert for a photoshoot at Riviera Country Club, about 25 miles north of the crash location, per ESPN.
  • He was driving a 2021 Genesis GV80 SUV, which had been loaned out to him. Last week, he hosted the PGA Tour’s Genesis Invitational.
  • The crash occurred on a winding two-lane road with a speed limit of 45 mph. Woods was traveling at a “greater speed than normal,” but did not seem impaired, said Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva.
  • Sheriff’s Deputy Carlos Gonzalez said crashes in the area are common because the road quickly descends and features an “S” curve. “That specific stretch of roadway is one of our trouble spots,” he said.

The scene: Woods “left his lane, crashed into a sign on the median … crossed into the southbound lanes, skipped a curb and went into a nearby field, where his vehicle hit a tree and came to a stop,” per WashPost.

  • He was found pinned in the driver’s seat of his car, which had deployed its air bags. He was wearing his seatbelt, which may have saved his life.
  • The fire department used a pry bar and an ax to free Woods, who was unable to walk and immediately rushed to the hospital.
  • “I spoke to him,” said Gonzalez, the first officer on the scene. “I asked him what his name was. He told me his name was Tiger. … He seemed lucid and calm.”

Watch: Helicopter footage (AP)

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