Tiger Woods car crash injuries: Latest updates and details from single-vehicle accident
Tiger Woods suffered multiple leg injuries and underwent surgery Tuesday after being involved in a single-car, rollover accident near Los Angeles.
The 45-year-old was the driver of the vehicle and the lone occupant, authorities said.
Woods underwent emergency surgery to repair significant damage to his right leg and ankle, his team said in a statement posted on his Twitter account late Tuesday night.
Woods' team said in the statement that the golfer was "awake, responsive and recovering in his hospital room" at Harbor-UCLA Medical Center following the surgery.
Woods, a 15-time major winner, is one of the most decorated golfers of all time (82 career victories). His last major victory, at The Masters in 2019, was his first in 10 years.
Here is the latest information regarding the accident and Woods’ condition. d
Tiger Woods' car crash details
The LA County Sheriff's Department responded to a 911 call for a roll-over accident at 7:12 a.m. PT on the border of Rolling Hills Estates and Rancho Palos Verdes. The vehicle had been traveling northbound on Hawthorne Boulevard and sustained major damage.
Video and photos of the crash site showed a mangled SUV, with the front end destroyed and airbags deployed.
According to the Los Angeles Times, the crash happened on a “curvy, steep stretch of Hawthorne Boulevard, a major road that cuts through the Palos Verdes Peninsula.” Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva told reporters that accidents are frequent in the area because of the slope and curve of the road.
MAP OF CRASH SITE:Updates and location of accident
"We have to assume they made that call almost immediately, as soon as it happened, because the neighbors there are sitting right within 50 feet of the location," Villanueva said. "If they didn't see it, they heard it. Because it literally happened right at their doorstep."
The home's occupants alerted authorities, and the Sheriff's Department responded at 7:18 a.m., as deputy Carlos Gonzalez reached Woods first. The Los Angeles County Fire Department joined him 10 minutes later after dispatching from Station 106 at 7:22 a.m., Fire Chief Daryl Osby said.
Villanueva said at this time, there is no reason to believe impairment or weather were factors in the crash. He said Woods was wearing his seat belt and added that an investigation of the accident could take days or even weeks.
Were the 'Jaws of Life' used?
No. While initial reports said the Jaws of Life — hydraulic tools that can be used to pry or cut automobile wreckage — were used, the rescue team actually opted for more traditional appliances: an ax and pry bar.
"The Jaws of Life were out there," department spokesperson Christopher Thomas told USA TODAY Sports, "but basically what they did was they broke the windshield out."
Woods was extricated from the vehicle via backboard, Osby said.
How first responders found Tiger Woods from crash
Gonzalez said Woods was unable to stand or remove himself from the vehicle. He was conscious and able to speak, appearing "calm and lucid," Gonzalez said.
Gonzalez first asked Woods his name, and he replied "Tiger." Gonzalez then immediately recognized him, he said. Gonzalez was wearing his body camera and it was on when he found Woods.
Osby said it was reported to him that Woods had serious injuries to both legs. He added that due to the nature of the accident, and the fact Woods was extricated from the vehicle, he met the criteria to be taken to the nearest trauma center, Harbor UCLA Hospital.
Tiger Woods' injuries
Late Tuesday night, a statement was released via Woods' Twitter account: "We thank everyone for the overwhelming support and messages during this tough time. As previously communicated, Tiger was involved in a single-car accident earlier this morning in California. He has undergone a long surgical procedure on his lower right leg and ankle after being brought to the hospital.
"He is currently awake, responsive, and recovering in his hospital room. Thank you to the wonderful doctors and hospital staff at Harbor UCLA Medical Center, the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department, and the Fire Department. Your support and assistance has been outstanding."
Anish Mahajan, the chief medical officer and interim CEO at Harbor UCLA Medical Center, said in the statement that Woods had multiple open fractures affecting both the upper and lower portions of his right tibia and fibula, the two main bones in the lower leg. The bones were stabilized "by inserting a rod into the tibia," he added.
Woods also suffered injuries to the bones in his right foot and ankle, which were stabilized using screws and pins, and to muscle and soft tissue in the leg. Mahajan said doctors had to surgically release "the covering of the muscles to relieve pressure due to swelling."
"Mr. Woods suffered significant orthopedic injuries to his right lower extremity that were treated during emergency surgery by orthopedic trauma specialists at Harbor-UCLA Medical Center, a level 1 trauma center," Mahajan said.
Tiger Woods' road to recovery
Age — Woods is 45 — will play a factor in recovery. Woods being a world-class athlete with access to elite medical care, along with his legendary work ethic, should help.
Woods nonetheless appears to have a long road to recovery, according to doctors.
"The fractures themselves, I’m sure will take months and months to heal – at least a year in the sense that he’d ever be able to rejoin the (PGA) Tour in a meaningful way," Dr. Robert Glatter, an emergency physician at Lennox Hill Hospital in New York City, told USA TODAY Sports.
Doctors credit seatbelt with saving Tiger Woods' life
Years ago, this type of rollover accident would have almost surely been deadly.
"It's something to take note of," Dr. Sam Hawkins, a trauma surgeon at Staten Island Hospital, told USA TODAY Sports. "That sort of car crash would have been fatal or guaranteed major injuries a decade-to-decades ago."
"(It's) a credit to the design of the vehicle as well as the way in which the accident occurred," Glatter said. "Again, he’s pretty lucky to be alive, that’s the take-home message right now."
Tiger Woods hosted Genesis Invitational in California
Woods makes his home in Jupiter, Florida, but he had been in Southern California over the weekend for the Genesis Open, a tournament hosted by his foundation at the Riviera Country Club in Pacific Palisades. He presented winner Max Homa with a trophy following the final round.
Actor David Spade and retired NBA legend Dwyane Wade each posted on social media about playing golf with Woods on Monday.
Tiger Woods had back surgery in December
Not long after he played alongside his son, Charlie, at the PNC Championship, Woods underwent back surgery — a microdiscectomy procedure to remove a pressurized disc fragment— in December that has prevented him from playing this season. He told CBS' Jim Nantz during Sunday's final round, "I'm feeling fine. I'm a little bit stiff. I have one more MRI scheduled ... then I can start doing more activities."
What type of car was Tiger Woods driving?
Photos and footage of the SUV that Woods was driving show a "Genesis Invitational" logo on the side of the vehicle. A Genesis spokesman said Woods was driving the GV80, the only SUV under Genesis — a luxury brand sold by Hyundai.
Contributing: Tom Schad, Josh Peter, Nathan Bomey, Mike Freeman; Associated Press