Tiger Woods was speeding before crashing SUV, sheriff says

In this Feb. 23 photo, a crane is used to lift a vehicle following a rollover accident involving golfer Tiger Woods, in the Rancho Palos Verdes suburb of Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Ringo H.W. Chiu)

 

LOS ANGELES — Authorities say Tiger Woods was speeding when he crashed an SUV in Southern California less than two months ago, leaving him seriously injured.

The golf superstar was driving 84 to 87 mph on a downhill stretch of road outside Los Angeles that had a speed limit of 45 mph, Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva said Wednesday.

The stretch of road is known for wrecks and drivers hitting speeds so high that there is an emergency exit for runaway vehicles just beyond where Woods crashed.

Villanueva blamed the Feb. 23 crash solely on excessive speed and Woods’ loss of control behind the wheel.

Detectives did not seek search warrants for the athlete’s blood samples, which could have been screened for drugs or alcohol. Investigators, however, did search the SUV’s data recorder, known as a black box, in the days after the crash.

Woods is in Florida recovering from multiple surgeries.

Originally from the Los Angeles area, Woods had been back home in February to host his PGA tournament, the Genesis Invitational at Riviera Country Club.

He was driving an SUV loaned to him by the tournament when he struck a raised median. The SUV crossed through two oncoming lanes and uprooted a tree.

 

This is the third time Woods has been involved in a vehicle investigation.

The most notorious example was when his SUV ran over a fire hydrant and hit a tree early on the morning after Thanksgiving in 2009. That crash was the start of shocking revelations that he had been cheating on his wife with multiple women. Woods lost major corporate sponsorships, went to a rehabilitation clinic in Mississippi and did not return to golf for five months.

In May 2017, Florida police found him asleep behind the wheel of a car parked awkwardly on the side of the road. He was arrested on a DUI charge and said later he had an unexpected reaction to prescription medicine for his back pain. Woods pleaded guilty to reckless driving and checked into a clinic to get help with prescription medication and a sleep disorder.

 

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