Tiger Woods is undergoing surgery after sustaining leg injuries in a rollover accident in Los Angeles on Tuesday, his agent said in a statement. Woods, the 45-year-old golfing legend, was the only person inside the vehicle, who suffered “major damage” in the crash, officials said.
MPs responded to the scene at 7:12 a.m. local time on Tuesday, the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department said. His SUV hurtled down the slope, traveling several hundred yards, turning over several times before landing on a hill in a Los Angeles suburb.
Woods was trapped inside the vehicle, forcing first responders to use tools to open the windshield in order to remove the woods, local officials said. The beloved golfer was transported to Harbor-UCLA Medical Center.
His agent, Mark Steinberg, told CBS Sports that Woods “suffered multiple leg injuries” in the crash. “He is currently in surgery and we thank you for your privacy and support,” he said.
His SUV – a 2021 Genesis GV80 – was the only vehicle involved. Video from the scene shows extensive damage to the front of the vehicle. Golf clubs and other personal items were removed from the scene and a crane cleared the crumpled debris.
Sheriff Alex Villanueva said there was no initial sign that Woods was weakened. The interior of the SUV remained intact, which gave Woods the cushion to survive the crash, Villanueva said. The investigation could take weeks.
MK Carlos Gonzalez, who responded to the incident, said Woods was calm but unable to fend for himself. “I asked what his name was, he told me his name was Tiger and at that point I immediately recognized him,” Gonzalez told reporters. “He seemed to be clear-headed and calm.”
Gonzalez said Woods wore his seat belt, which “dramatically increased” his chances of survival. The MP called the area a “problem zone” for speeding and accidents. “It was very lucky that Mr. Woods came out alive.”
Woods, a Florida resident, was in Los Angeles to host his annual golf tournament, the Genesis Invitational. He has spent the last two days filming on Discovery Golf TV with former NBA player Dwyane Wade, who released a video of their meeting this morning.
Woods, widely regarded as one of the greatest golfers of all time, has 82 career PGA Tour victories, including 15 major championships. He is recovering from extensive back surgery and has not played since the PNC Championship in December. On February 16, Woods said he was still in rehabilitation after the procedure but did not confirm whether he would play at the Masters in April.
“I feel good, I feel good. I’m a little stiff,” Woods said last week. “Also in the gym, I always do the mundane things you need to do for rehab.”
“Barbara and I just heard about Tiger’s accident, and like everyone else, we are deeply concerned,” Nickalus tweeted Tuesday. “We want to offer him our sincere support and prayers during this difficult time. Please join us in wishing Tiger successful surgery and the best for a full recovery.”
“I just saw the terrible news”, golfer Justin Rose tweeted. “We know how tough you are, we’ve seen it a hundred times. Hoping and praying that you’re okay my friend.”
This is the third automobile incident involving the majors champion. In 2009, his vehicle hit a tree. Soon after, revelations about infidelity emerged, losing Woods’ sponsorships and putting him in rehab. And in 2017, Woods was arrested and charged with DUI when Florida police found him passed out while driving a parked car.
Two years later, Woods made a remarkable comeback to greatness, when he won the Masters for the. “I had serious doubts after what happened a few years ago,” Woods said at the time. “I was very lucky to have another chance to do something I love to do.”