Golf: Tiger Woods crash due to 'unsafe' driving speed, at nearly double 70kmh limit

Police inspect Woods' vehicle (left) after a crash left the golfer (right) with serious leg injuries.
Police inspect Woods' vehicle (left) after a crash left the golfer (right) with serious leg injuries.PHOTOS: REUTERS, AFP

LOS ANGELES (AFP) - Tiger Woods was driving at nearly double the 45mph (70kmh) speed limit when he crashed in California in February, the Los Angeles County’s sheriff said on Wednesday (April 7).

Woods’ SUV was travelling at up to 87mph (140kmh) before it flew off the road and flipped several times during the accident in Ranchos Palos Verdes, leaving the 15-time major champion with a shattered right leg.

“The primary causal factor for this traffic collision was driving at a speed unsafe for the road conditions and the inability to negotiate the curve of the roadway,” said Alex Villanueva.

“Estimated speeds at the first area of impact were 84 to 87 miles per hour.”

There were “no signs of impairment,” or evidence of any “distracted driving,” and Woods voluntarily allowed the results of the investigation to be made public, officials said.

Woods, 45, may have inadvertently hit the car’s accelerator while attempting to press the brakes upon losing control, Captain James Powers said, although Woods himself does not recall the incident.

Investigators did not check Woods' phone or test his bloodwork because there was “no evidence of any impairment or intoxication,” Powers told a press conference.

The golfer underwent hours of surgery to repair his shattered lower right leg and ankle, which included the insertion of a rod into his tibia and screws and pins to stabilise the joint.

He is now recovering at his home in Florida.

Woods, whose 82 US PGA titles are level with Sam Snead for the all-time win record, won the 2019 Masters for his first major title in 11 years to complete an astonishing comeback after multiple back surgeries.