Tiger Woods in San Diego. Photo by Chris Stone

Golf star Tiger Woods suffered serious leg injuries Tuesday when the SUV he was driving rolled off a winding, downhill road in a suburb of Los Angeles, authorities reported.

The Los County Angeles Sheriff’s Department said Woods had to be extricated from the wreckage by a “jaws of life” tool. The vehicle sustained major damage.

Woods was the sole occupant, and no other vehicles were believed to be involved in the crash. He was pulled from the wreck by Los Angeles County firefighters and paramedics, then taken to Harbor-UCLA Medical Center by ambulance.

According to the county fire department, Woods was listed in serious condition when he was taken to the hospital. Woods’ agent Mark Steinberg said the 45-year-old golfer suffered multiple leg injuries.

Woods underwent a long surgical procedure on his lower right leg and ankle by orthopedic trauma specialists, according to a tweet on his account posted at 9:30 p.m.

“Comminuted open fractures affecting both the upper and lower portions of the tibia and fibula bones were stabilized by inserting a rod into the tibia,” Dr. Anish Mahajan, Harbor-UCLA Medical Center’s chief medical officer, said in a statement posted on the tweet.

“Additional injuries to the bones of the foot and ankle were stabilized with a combination of screws and pins. Trauma to the muscle and soft- tissue of the leg required surgical release of the covering of the muscles to relieve pressure due to swelling.”

Woods was described in the tweet as “awake, responsive, and recovering in his hospital room.”

Footage from the scene showed Woods’ SUV resting on its side in a grassy area near some trees, with major front-end damage. The cause of the crash remained under investigation, although Sheriff Alex Villanueva said there was no immediate evidence that Woods was impaired in any way. Villanueva said the stretch of road is prone to accidents.

Woods was in the Los Angeles area for the annual Genesis Invitational golf tournament at the Riviera Country Club in the Pacific Palisades.

The golfer has had two other high-profile auto incidents. In November 2009, he crashed his SUV into a fire hydrant outside his Florida home and suffered minor injuries. In 2017, he was found asleep in a vehicle in Jupiter, Florida, with multiple painkillers and sleeping aids in his system.

Updated at 8 p.m., Wednesday, Feb. 24, 2021

City News Service contributed to this article.

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Chris Jennewein

Chris Jennewein is Editor & Publisher of Times of San Diego.