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Tiger Woods Crash Caused By Unsafe Speed, LA Sheriff Says

A crane is used to lift a vehicle driven by golfer Tiger Woods following a rollover accident in the Rancho Palos Verdes area of Los Angeles.
Image credit: Ringo H.W. Chiu

Tiger Woods crashed in February because he was driving at an unsafe speed and was unable to negotiate a curve on the road, the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s office said Wednesday.

The legendary golfer sustained a compound fracture to one leg in addition to other injuries, in the single-vehicle crash in Los Angeles on Feb. 23.

“Estimated speeds at the first area of impact were 84 to 87 mph, and the final estimated speed when the vehicle struck the tree was 75 mph,” Sheriff Alex Villanueva told reporters as he announced the department’s findings about the cause of the incident.

The posted speed on the road was 45 mph, Capt. James Powers later said.

He suggested a factor that may have contributed to the crash: “There was no evidence of braking throughout this collision. It is speculated and believed that Tiger Woods inadvertently hit the accelerator instead of the brake pedal.” The accelerator was pushed down just below the maximum, Powers stated.

The car eventually hit a tree, which “caused the vehicle to go airborne and do a somewhat pirouette, landing on its side,” Powers added.

Officials said they did not carry out tests to determine if Woods was under the influence of alcohol or drugs, because they concluded there was no probable cause to do so. Woods did not show signs of impairment and there was no other evidence intoxication might be a factor, they added.

The golfer will not receive a citation for the incident, Villanueva said, and he stressed that Woods has been cooperative with the investigation. The details of an investigation such as this would typically be kept confidential, he said, but Woods and his representatives allowed for the information to be released.

Woods was able to return to his home in Florida in mid-March, where he is recovering. He said last month that he is “working on getting stronger every day.”

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