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First responder says wearing a seatbelt likely helped save Tiger Woods’ life

Golfer Tiger Woods is in serious condition following a solo car accident Tuesday morning near Rancho Palos Verdes, California, Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva said on Tuesday afternoon.

Woods was driving a Genesis GV80 SUV, which rolled over several times before coming to a stop. After being extracted from the vehicle, Woods was taken to Harbor-UCLA Medical Center with multiple leg injuries, and is undergoing surgery. Contradicting earlier reports, Los Angeles County Fire Department Chief Daryl Osby said the Jaws of Life tool was not used to remove Woods from the car.

Villanueva said when deputies arrived at the scene, there was “no evidence of impairment,” and weather was not a factor in the crash. Deputy Carlos Gonzales was the first officer to reach the vehicle, and he told reporters Woods was conscious and able to communicate but could not stand on his own. Gonzales said Woods was wearing a seatbelt, which “greatly increased the likelihood that it saved his life.”

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