Authorities release cause of Tiger Woods crash

National

FILE – In this Feb. 23, 2021, file 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. The Los Angeles County sheriff plans to announce Wednesday, April 7, 2021, what caused Woods to crash an SUV in Southern California earlier in the year, seriously injuring himself in the wreck. (AP Photo/Ringo H.W. Chiu, File)

LOS ANGELES (AP) — 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.

SLIDESHOW: Tiger Woods SUV after crash

Villanueva blamed the Feb. 23 crash solely on excessive speed and Woods’ loss of control behind the wheel. Sheriff’s Capt. James Powers said there was no evidence that the golfer braked throughout the wreck and that it’s believed Woods inadvertently hit the accelerator instead of the brake pedal.

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.

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.

The athlete is in Florida recovering from multiple surgeries, including a lengthy procedure for shattered tibia and fibula bones in his lower right leg in multiple locations. Those were stabilized with a rod in his tibia. Additional injuries to the bones in his foot and ankle required screws and pins.

Woods, 45, has never gone an entire year without playing, dating back to his first PGA Tour event as a 16-year-old in high school. He had hoped to play this year in the Masters tournament, which begins Thursday.

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