Tiger Woods may have hit accelerator instead of brake in high-speed crash

2021-04-08 07:01:23 GMT2021-04-08 15:01:23(Beijing Time) Sina English


In this file photo taken on February 23, the vehicle driven by golfer Tiger Woods lies on its side in Rancho Palos Verdes, California, after a rollover accident. 

Tiger Woods was traveling more than 40miles (64km) per hour above the speed limit when helost control of his car, causing the crash that severely injuredhim in February, the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Departmentsaid on Wednesday.

Heading down a notoriously dangerous stretch of road in theRolling Hills Estates community in Los Angeles County, Woods'car reached speeds of 84 to 87 mph when he lostcontrol along a curve that has been the site of 14 otheraccidents, Sheriff Alex Villanueva said at a news conference.The speed limit was 45 mph.

The sport utility vehicle was going 75 mph when it hit a tree, Villanueva said. There was no evidence thatWoods, 45, was impaired or that he had consumed drugs oralcohol, the sheriff added.

The car's so-called "black box" data recorder showed thatWoods engaged the accelerator and never applied the brake duringthe incident, said LASD Captain James Powers.

That could indicate that he may have mistakenly hit thewrong pedal while trying to control the car, Powers said.

"It’s believed that when you panic or you have some sort ofsudden interruption while you’re driving, your initial thoughtis to hit the brake and it’s believed he may have done that buthit the accelerator," Powers said.

The one-car crash left the 82-time PGA Tour winner with afractured right leg and shattered ankle, and stunned the worldof sport and beyond, with former presidents Donald Trump andBarack Obama among those who offered support. Woods was treatedat Harbor-UCLA Medical Center as well as Cedars-Sinai MedicalCenter.

Woods was not cited for driving at excessive speeds becausethere were no witnesses to the incident, which involved only hiscar, Villanueva said.

"The decision not to issue a citation will be the exact samething for anyone in this room who went through the samesituation — a solo traffic collision, there's no witnesses,(it's) infraction only, and we're not going to issue a citationon an infraction not committed in a peace officer's presence orindependent witnesses," he said.

On Twitter, Woods said on Wednesday that he had beeninformed by the sheriff's department that it had closed theinvestigation. The golfer expressed gratitude to those who hadhelped him, including passers-by who called the 911 emergencyservice, and paramedics who rushed him to the hospital.

"I will continue to focus on my recovery and family, andthank everyone for the overwhelming support and encouragementI've received throughout this very difficult time," said Woods,who will miss this week's Masters while recovering from thecrash.