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Speeding, failure to handle curve caused Tiger Woods’ crash in Rolling Hills Estates, sheriff says

Tiger Woods was speeding and failed to negotiate a curve when the SUV he was driving hit a median, sheered off a tree then rolled over in Rolling Hills Estates last month, leaving him with a broken leg, the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department said on Wednesday, April 6.

Sheriff Alex Villaneuva, at a press conference in downtown Los Angeles, said detectives had determined excessive speed was the cause of the Feb. 23 crash.

Investigators said they determined Woods’ vehicle was recorded traveling 84 to 87 miles per hour just prior to the crash, and was still travelling at around 75 miles per hour when he hit a tree.

The crash happened just before 7:15 a.m. along Hawthorne Boulevard and Blackhorse Road, a downhill stretch known for bad accidents, according to the Los Angeles County sheriff’s officials.

Neighbors have described the sloping, curvy stretch of road as notorious for accidents, especially among those not from the area. Drivers sometimes travel in excess of 80 mph despite the 45-mph speed limit.

Woods, who had to be helped out of the vehicle by firefighters after they ripped off the windshield with an ax, was the only person in the vehicle.

Woods was in Los Angeles for a two-day shoot with Golf Digest and GOLFTV at Rolling Hills Country Club. The shoot involved Woods giving on-course lessons to celebrities, providing instruction and hitting a few putts. ESPN reporter Shelley Smith said Woods was headed from Terranea Resort to Rolling Hills Country Club to do a photo shoot and play golf with Drew Brees and Chargers quarterback Justin Herbert that morning.

She said the call time was 8 a.m. and “he’s always early,” so producers were worried and wondering where he was and trying to call his phone, but he didn’t answer.

Woods’ SUV, a courtesy vehicle, took out a sign reading, “Welcome to Rolling Hills Estates.” The SUV then went across southbound lanes and struck a tree before rolling over several times and coming to rest in a brushy swath.

Villanueva has said the interior of the vehicle was “more or less intact,” but the front end destroyed.

Woods turned professional in 1996 and has 82 PGA Tour wins in his career, including 15 major championships. But back problems and other injuries have slowed his career. He is a Cypress native.

On March 16, Woods said on his Twitter account he was back home and recovering: “I will be recovering at home and working on getting stronger every day.”

It is unclear when, or if, he will return to the PGA Tour.

Woods also has a long-running foundation, the TRG Foundation, formerly the Tiger Woods Foundation, which began in 2006 as a learning center in Anaheim and has since expanded to a global reach, providing STEM courses and other education programs to millions of children, the charity’s website says.

This is a breaking news story. Please check back for updates.

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