Tiger Woods unable to remember driving on day of crash, police say

Tiger Woods
Los Angeles county sheriff’s deputies inspect the vehicle of golfer Tiger Woods, who was rushed to hospital after suffering multiple injuries, after it was involved in a single-vehicle accident last week. Photograph: Gene Blevins/Reuters
Los Angeles county sheriff’s deputies inspect the vehicle of golfer Tiger Woods, who was rushed to hospital after suffering multiple injuries, after it was involved in a single-vehicle accident last week. Photograph: Gene Blevins/Reuters

Last modified on Mon 8 Mar 2021 09.37 EST

Tiger Woods told responding deputies to his single-vehicle crash last week that he did not know how the accident happened and didn’t remember driving, USA Today reported Thursday.

USA Today cited a copy of the search warrant affidavit that was used by the Los Angeles county sheriff’s department to obtain the black box in the SUV Woods was driving.

“The deputies asked him how the collision occurred,” according to the affidavit. “Driver said he did not know and did not even remember driving ... Driver was treated for his injuries at the hospital and was asked there again how the collision occurred. He repeated that he did not know and did not remember driving.”

The black box houses data related to speed and acceleration, braking sequence, steering angle changes and other instrument activity.

A sheriff’s deputy said Wednesday the warrant is a matter of course in LA County and considered part of the department’s due diligence.

“We’re trying to determine if a crime was committed,” sheriff’s deputy John Schloegl said. “If somebody is involved in a traffic collision, we’ve got to reconstruct the traffic collision, if there was any reckless driving, if somebody was on their cell phone or something like that. We determine if there was a crime. If there was no crime, we close out the case, and it was a regular traffic collision.”

Woods, 45, was hurt last week in an early-morning, single-car crash near the border of Rolling Hills Estates and Rancho Palos Verdes, California. Emergency personnel extracted him from his car and transported him to Harbor-UCLA Medical Center.

The Los Angeles County sheriff characterized the crash as “purely an accident” and appeared to rule out any potential criminal charges even as authorities were still investigating. Deputies saw no evidence the golf star was impaired by drugs or alcohol after the rollover wreck on a downhill stretch of road known for crashes, sheriff Alex Villanueva said.

“He was not drunk,” Villanueva said during a livestreamed social media event. “We can throw that one out.”

Woods underwent surgery Tuesday to treat multiple injuries to his right lower leg, including the insertion of a rod into the tibia. Additional screws and pins were needed in the leg, and he was treated for muscle and soft-tissue injuries. He underwent another procedure last Friday, before being moved to Cedars-Sinai Medical Center.

McIlroy’s fast start at Bay Hill inspired by Woods

Rory McIlroy has revealed he tackles Bay Hill in a similar way to course specialist Tiger Woods after making a superb start at the Arnold Palmer Invitational.

McIlroy fired seven birdies, including five in a row on his back nine, and one bogey in an opening 66 to set the early clubhouse target. At six under par, McIlroy led by one from US Open champion Bryson DeChambeau.

“I feel like you don’t have to do anything special to shoot a good score here,” McIlroy said after his round. “You can be really conservative off the tees if you want to be. I’ve watched Tiger enough here over the years. He played [Bay Hill] very conservatively, took care of the par fives and that was usually good enough to get the job done – so [I took] a leaf out of his book.”