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November 27, 2009

Tiger Woods in car accident early Friday morning

Posted at 3:53 PM by Damon Hack | Categories: Tiger Woods

Tiger Woods was injured in a car accident early Friday morning outside his home in Windermere, Fla., and was hospitalized before being released, according to the Florida Highway Patrol and a statement released by Woods's management team.Tiger_600x379

Woods, the No. 1 golfer in the world, suffered facial lacerations when his Cadillac Escalade sports utility vehicle struck a fire hydrant and a tree around 2:25 a.m., according to the Florida Highway Patrol police report. He was treated at Health Central Hopsital in Ocoee, Fla., and was released in good condition, a Woods spokesman told the Associated Press. Woods's agent, Mark Steinberg, said in an email to CNBC that the golfer "is fine."

Alcohol was not involved and Woods was the only person involved in the crash, the police report said.

Windermere Police Chief Daniel Saylor told the Associated Press on Friday that Woods's wife, Elin Nordegren, told officers she used a golf club to break the car's back window to help Woods out of the vehicle after hearing the accident from inside the home. According to the Associated Press, when officers arrived they found Woods lying in the street with his wife hovering over him. Woods had blood in his mouth and cuts on his lips, and he was in and out of consciousness, Saylor told the Associated Press.

Saylor told the Associated Press that his officers gave Woods first aid until fire and rescue arrived about 10 minutes later.

Windermere mayor Gary Bruhn, who was briefed on the accident by Saylor, told Golf.com that the police did not release news of the report until after Woods had been released from the hospital so that the hospital would not become overrun with reporters. He said that when the Windermere police responded to the scene that Woods was on the ground, "dazed," and that he did try to get up on his own. He said he did not know if Woods had received any stitches and he did not know whether the Escalade was in forward or reverse at the time of the accident.

Woods's vehicle was towed by Johnson's Wrecker Service in Orlando, where it is in a garage space that cannot be seen from a public street.

The Isleworth development, in which Arnold Palmer was an early investor, is not part of the incorporated town of Windermere, in Orange County. It is a gated community with its own private security force. Windermere police were the first respondents to a Florida Highway Patrol call for emergency help. Bruhn said his police arrived within minutes of the call, but that he believed Isleworth security officers were already on the accident scene when the Windermere officers arrived.

On Friday afternoon, a statement was posted on tigerwoods.com, Woods's web site, which read:

"Tiger Woods was in a minor car accident outside his home last night. He was admitted, treated and released today in good condition. We appreciate very much everyone's thoughts and well wishes."

The celebrity web site, TMZ.com, citing multiple unnamed law enforcement sources, said Friday that Woods and Nordegren argued before the accident. However Saylor said his officers did not hear anything about an alleged domestic dispute, according to the Associated Press.

It is not clear whether Woods, 33, will be able to compete next week in the Chevron World Challenge in Thousand Oaks, Calif., a tournament that benefits Woods's eponymous foundation and which he annually hosts.

Woods spent the latter half of 2008 rehabilitating his left knee after undergoing reconstructive surgery following his victory in that year's United States Open at Torrey Pines. He returned to the PGA Tour in February of this year and won six times, though he was shut out in the major championships.

Woods, who has won 14 professional major titles, trails Jack Nicklaus's record by four.

More Tiger Woods: Photos from Isleworth | Life in Pictures | SI Covers | Family Album

(Photo: Andrew Redington/Getty Images)

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