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Tiger Woods crash California: Golf star faces difficult recovery

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The primary deputy who arrived on the scene of the rollover crash stated “it’s very lucky that Mr. Woods was capable of come out of this alive.”

LOS ANGELES — In a profession crammed with outstanding comebacks, Tiger Woods faces maybe his hardest restoration of all.

Woods was driving alone via a sweeping, downhill stretch of highway via coastal suburbs of Los Angeles when his SUV struck an indication, crossed over a raised median and two oncoming lanes flipped a number of occasions earlier than coming to relaxation on its facet. Its airbags deployed.

A sheriff’s deputy poked his head via a gap within the windshield to see Woods, nonetheless carrying his seatbelt, sitting within the driver’s seat.

The crash prompted “important” accidents to his proper leg and he underwent what was described as a “lengthy surgical process” at Harbor-UCLA Medical Heart.

Anish Mahajan, the chief medical officer, stated Woods shattered tibia and fibula bones in a number of areas. He suffered “open fractures,” that means the pores and skin was damaged.

The bones have been stabilized by a rod within the tibia. He stated a mixture of screws and pins have been used for accidents within the ankle and foot.

An announcement on his Twitter account stated he was awake, responsive and recovering.

“I’ll say that it’s very lucky that Mr. Woods was capable of come out of this alive,” stated Carlos Gonzalez, the deputy from the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Division who was the primary on the scene after a neighbor referred to as 911.

No costs have been filed, and police stated there was no proof he was impaired.

The golf world was surprised by the information.

“As if his physique hasn’t endured sufficient,” Jon Rahm, the No. 2 participant on the planet, stated from the Workday Championship in Florida. “I simply hope he can get out of the hospital after restoration and he can nonetheless play along with his youngsters and have a traditional life.”

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Dr. Joseph Patterson, an orthopedic trauma surgeon at Keck Drugs of USC in Los Angeles, stated accidents like these sustained by Woods are among the many commonest seen in hospital emergency rooms.

Patterson didn’t deal with Woods and wouldn’t remark particularly concerning the golfer’s accidents however stated the danger of an infection is extraordinarily excessive for sufferers with open fractures.

“Tissue might be uncovered to micro organism, dust and clothes. The outcomes is usually a lot worse if that tissue will get contaminated,” Patterson stated. Open fractures can require a number of surgical procedures to restore.

Washington Soccer Staff quarterback Alex Smith suffered an open fracture to his decrease leg whereas being tackled. He practically misplaced the leg attributable to an infection however made a outstanding restoration and performed final season.

The crash was the most recent setback for Woods, who at occasions has appeared unstoppable on the golf course along with his 15 main championships and record-tying 82 victories on the PGA Tour. He’s among the many most recognizable sports activities figures on the planet, and at 45 with a lowered schedule from 9 earlier surgical procedures, stays golf’s greatest draw.

He received the 2008 U.S. Open with shredded knee ligaments and two stress fractures in his left leg. His private life imploded on Thanksgiving weekend in 2009 when he was caught having a number of extramarital affairs and crashed his car close to his Florida residence. He returned to win his 11th award as PGA Tour participant of the 12 months and attain No. 1.

After which after 4 again surgical procedures that saved him out of golf for the higher a part of two years, he received the Masters in April 2019 for the fifth time, a victory that ranks among the many nice comebacks within the sport.

Now it’s now not a matter of when he performs once more — the Masters is seven weeks away — but when he performs once more.

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Woods was in Los Angeles over the weekend because the match host of the Genesis Invitational at Riviera Nation Membership. Monday and Tuesday had been put aside for Discovery-owned GOLFTV for Woods to offer taking part in tricks to celebrities. A tweet Monday confirmed him in a cart at Rolling Hills Nation Membership with comic David Spade. He additionally labored with NBA nice Dwyane Wade, who posted a video to his Instagram account.

“It was a terrific day,” Wade stated Tuesday evening on Turner Sports activities, the place he’s a studio analyst. “And I awoke immediately so proud to have the ability to publish that second for the world, like slightly snippet of our second collectively. And I took a nap, and I woke as much as the information. So, you already know, identical to everyone on the market, my ideas and prayers are all to his family members.”

Ideas and prayers have come from in all places — Jack Nicklaus and Michael Jordan, Mike Tyson, and former Presidents Barack Obama and Donald Trump. Woods performed golf with each of them, and Trump awarded him the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2019 after maybe his nice triumph — the Masters after he had gone via 4 again surgical procedures.

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Woods had a fifth again surgical procedure, a microdiscectomy, on Dec. 23, simply three days after he performed the PNC Championship along with his son Charlie, who now could be 12. Woods additionally has a 13-year-old daughter, Samantha.

The crash occurred about 7:15 a.m. as Woods drove his courtesy car from the Genesis Invitational via the upscale suburbs. Gonzalez does site visitors enforcement on the highway Woods was touring and says within the space of the crash he generally catches folks topping 80 mph (129 kph) within the downhill, 45-mph zone. Crashes are widespread.

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Police stated Woods was alert as firefighters pried open the entrance windshield to get him out. Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva stated the airbags deployed and the within of the SUV stayed largely intact, which “gave him a cushion to outlive the crash.”

Authorities stated they checked for any odor of alcohol or different indicators he was beneath the affect of a substance and located none. They didn’t say how briskly he was driving.

That is the third time Woods has been concerned in a automobile investigation. Eight years after the 2009 incident, Florida police discovered him asleep behind the wheel of a automobile parked awkwardly on the facet of the highway. He was arrested on a DUI cost and stated he had an sudden response to prescription drugs for his again ache. Woods later pleaded responsible to reckless driving and checked right into a clinic to get assist with prescription remedy and a sleep problem.

Woods hasn’t received because the Zozo Championship in Japan in fall 2019, and he’s lowered his taking part in schedule in recent times due to accidents. Apart from his 5 again surgical procedures, he’s had 4 surgical procedures on his left knee.

He was requested through the CBS broadcast Sunday at Riviera about recovering from his again surgical procedure in time to play the Masters and Woods replied, “God, I hope so. I’ve acquired to get there first.”

Ferguson reported from Jacksonville, Florida. AP author Christopher Weber in Los Angeles and AP Basketball Author Tim Reynolds in Miami contributed.

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