Tiger Woods suffers serious leg injuries in LA car crash

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Golfer Tiger Woods recovering in hospital after emergency surgery for  multiple "open fractures" sustained in Los Angeles car crash on Tuesday.

15-time Major champion golfer Tiger Woods had lengthy emergency surgery after suffering serious injuries in a single vehicle car crash in Los Angeles on Tuesday morning that left him trapped in his vehicle.

Woods had been travelling alone to a shoot with Golf Digest and GOLFTV at the Rolling Hills Country Club when the accident occurred shortly after 7am. It is believed Woods' Cadillac rolled in the incident, which happened on the border of Rolling Hills Estates and Rancho Palos Verdes. Woods had been travelling northbound on Hawthorne Boulevard at Blackthorne Road.

The wreckage of Tiger Woods' car after the crash in Los Angeles.

Initial reports suggested "jaws of life" had been required to free Woods from the wreckage, but that has now been denied. Lt. Michael White, of the LA Sheriff's Dept., said the 45-year-old father-of-two had been conscious and fully coherent when they arrived at the scene before being transferred to hospital by ambulance for emergency surgery.

"Mr Woods suffered significant orthopaedic injuries to his right lower extremity that were tearted during emergency surgery by orthopaedic trauma specialists at Harbor-UCLA Medical Centre, a level 1 trauma centre," said Anish Mahajan, MD, Chief Medical Officer and Interim CEO at Harbor-UCLA Medical Centre.

"Comminuted open fractures affecting both the upper and lower portions of the tibia and fibula bones were stabilised by inserting a rod into the tibia. Additional injuries to the bones of the foot and ankle were stabilised 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."

A statement released on Woods' Twitter account confirmed that the 82-time PGA Tour winner was "awake, responsive and recovering in the hospital room". The statement went on to thank to emergency teams and medical staff for their "outstanding" support and assistance.

Speaking on Tuesday evening, Woods' agent, Mark Steinberg, said: "Tiger Woods was in a single-car accident this morning in California where he suffered multiple leg injuries. He is currently in surgery and we thank you for your privacy and support."

Investigators from LASD Lomita Station are working to establish what caused Woods to crash.

Fellow pros and celebrities were quick to send their thoughts and prayers to the legend of the game, with close friend Justin Thomas holding back tears as he spoke at his Workday Championship press conference.

Justin Rose tweeted: "@tigerwoods, just seen the awful news. We know how tough you are, we’ve seen it a hundred times. Hoping and praying you’re ok my friend."

Barack Obama wrote: "Sending my prayers to @TigerWoods and his family tonight—here’s to a speedy recovery for the GOAT of golf. If we’ve learned anything over the years, it’s to never count Tiger out."

And 18-time Major champion and long-time friend Jack Nicklaus wrote: "Barbara and I just heard about Tiger’s accident, and like everyone else, we are deeply concerned. We want to offer him our heartfelt support and prayers at this difficult time. Please join us in wishing Tiger a successful surgery and all the best for a full recovery."

In a statement, PGA Tour commissioner Jay Monahan said: "We have been made aware of Tiger Woods' car accident today. We are awaiting further information when he comes out of surgery.

"On behalf of the PGA Tour & our players, Tiger is in our prayers and will have our full support as he recovers.”

On Sunday, Woods revealed he was awaiting the results of an upcoming MRI before setting out his plans for a return to practice and competition, saying he hoped to be able to play at The Masters in April.

Tiger Woods' last golf appearance came at the PNC Championship alongside son Charlie in December.

Woods last competed alongside his son at December's PNC Championship before undergoing a microdiscectomy procedure to remove a pressurised disc fragment that was pinching a nerve.

It was his fifth back surgery and the first since his spinal fusion in April 2017.

There is no timeline for Woods' recovery from his injuries in the crash but several experts have suggested that similar injuries take a minimum of a year to fully heal.