Behind the Wheel

Lindsay Lohan's Alleged Hit-and-Run and Other Bad Celebrity Drivers

George Michael is accused of a hit-and-run. From Nicole Richie’s ride down the wrong side of the road to Tiger Woods’ infamous wreck, VIEW OUR GALLERY of stars you wouldn’t want to take a ride with.

Pacific Coast News (3)

Pacific Coast News (3)

Worst Celebrity Drivers

One day after sniping at Amanda Bynes for still having a license, Lindsay Lohan was arrested for allegedly hitting a pedestrian. From Tiger Woods’s infamous accident to Shia LaBeouf's almost losing a finger in a crash, see other stars who will make you change lanes.

David Tonnessen / Pacific Coast News

Lindsay Lohan

Lindsay Lohan and Amanda Bynes are seemingly in heated competition for the title of Worst Celebrity Driver of 2012. Lohan’s most recent mishap occurred outside the Dream Hotel in New York City, where she reportedly hit a young man while parking her Porsche. The former Disney star then went inside the hotel anyway but emerged again at 2:30 a.m. and was arrested for leaving the scene of the accident. Police eventually released her with a ticket. This isn’t the first hit-and-run incident Lohan has been accused of this year: in March, the actress grazed another unfortunate bystander near the Hookah Lounge in Hollywood. Lohan also smashed into the back of an 18-wheeler in June, was accused of another hit-and-run in July 2011, and was arrested in 2007 for driving under the influence—an incident that landed her in jail and on probation for years.

David Tonnessen / Pacific Coast News

Amanda Bynes

After the behind-the-wheel track record Amanda Bynes has earned herself this year, we’re strongly recommending that she invests in a bicycle. The former Nickelodeon star was charged with a DUI in June after she allegedly sideswiped a police car in Hollywood and refused to take a Breathalyzer or drug test at the scene of the accident. Her response? She turned to the president, of course. “I don’t drink,” she wrote in a tweet addressed to @BarackObama “Please fire the cop who arrested me. I also don’t hit and run. The end.” In the weeks before that, Bynes reportedly was seen attempting a three-point U-turn while texting, which resulted in her backing over a curb, holding up traffic, and sideswiping another car. Bynes was busted yet again on Aug. 4 for allegedly pulling another hit-and-run. Just a few weeks later, Bynes was apparently was rear-ended by another vehicle, and just last weekend, Bynes was cited again for driving with a suspended license.

Steve Finn / Getty Images

George Michael

Many times, celebrities who find themselves in car accidents were trying to get away from paparazzi and their cameras. But George Michael went right into them Tuesday when he crashed his Range Rover into the front of a photo store called Snappy Snaps in the posh Hampstead neighborhood of London. The former Wham! frontman was arrested at the scene after taking drug and alcohol tests, but was later released on bail. Michael, who has a history of driving under the influence, was just back on the road after his two-year driving ban recently ended. The singer admitted to driving while high in 2007, which caused him to lose his license. For his latest accident, which reportedly occurred on his way back from a Gay Pride parade in London, Michael will be tried next month. At least he got one last party in.

Peter Morrison / AP Photo; Ho New / Reuters

Tiger Woods

The exact details of Tiger Woods’s car accident in November 2009 are still murky, even if its consequences aren’t. In the short term, it caused him some injuries to the face—which may or may not have been amplified by his then wife taking a nine-iron to it, as the rumors go. In the slightly longer term, it blew the cover off his collection of extra-marital affairs. And now, it will reportedly cost him $100 million in a divorce settlement. What happened is that Woods allegedly hurriedly backed out of his driveway in Florida in his Cadillac Escalade, hit a tree and then smacked into a fire hydrant, doing about $8,000 worth of damage to the SUV. His now ex-wife Elin Nordegren reportedly scrambled out—it was past 2 a.m. at this point—and tried to free him from the car by smashing the rear window with one of his clubs. At least, that’s the story they’ve stuck to. Some reports suggest she was chasing him out of the car, and others even claim he was high on Ambien at the time. Nevertheless, Woods may be good with a driver, but not so much as one.

LRR / Fame Pictures

January Jones

After a walk of shame photo frenzy put January Jones on many a celebrity blog in June, the paparazzi were hungry for more incriminating shots. The Mad Men star was heading home after an evening at The London West Hollywood Hotel later that week when some photogs caught her scent. Trying to get away, the Emmy nominee lost control of her car and slammed it into three other vehicles, which were all parked at the time. Then, she called 911 and celebrity chef Bobby Flay, as one does. “I can’t deal with all this commotion,” she reportedly said at the scene. Flay allegedly showed up and urged her to leave the scene. Jones was not arrested, but her car was impounded by police, who told TMZ that she later returned to the scene and explained that she fled due to the paparazzi following her. Jones claimed to have left her license with a witness and walked home, where she called 911. Though Flay told TMZ that Jones had had a drink with him at the hotel that night, police reportedly did not administer a sobriety test since there was no way to prove she hadn’t consumed alcohol when she arrived home. If only Lindsay Lohan were so lucky.

Fame Pictures

Harrison Ford

Indiana Jones star Harrison Ford is known for the scar on his chin, but the iconic mark that has given him a rugged image comes from an accident that occurred before he was famous. Ford crashed his Volvo into a telephone pole as a 20-year-old and though he has the wound to prove it, the accident is hardly the most serious accident he has ever been in. Eleven years ago, while Ford was training as a pilot, he was practicing a point of technique with his instructor in a helicopter near Santa Clarita, California when a mistake brought the chopper down for a hard landing. The helicopter crashed onto a dry riverbed, slid forward in the sand, and rolled over onto its side. Neither he, nor his instructor, was injured. Air Force One should probably not be trusted in his hands.

Fame Pictures

LeAnn Rimes

LeAnn Rimes car insurance premiums took a beating in 2009 after she was involved in a pair of fender benders. In August, the country music singer got into an accident with another car that the police called a “very minor scrape between two vehicles.” But less than a month later, Rimes had another accident. The paparazzi were on hand to document that one because, the singer claimed, it was their fault to begin with. She was leaving a store in Santa Monica when more than 20 photographers descended on her. She scrambled into the car and soon rear-ended another driver. "She was scared by all the paparazzi following her and did not look up for a second because she was looking out the side of her window, and she did tap into the back of the other car," a source close to her told People Magazine at the time. Perhaps she shouldn’t have had that notorious affair with co-star Eddie Cibrian that put her back in the spotlight earlier that summer then.

Matthew Simmons, WireImage / Getty Images

Britney Spears

Amid accusations that she is no model mother, Britney Spears had her own set of driving issue as well.  The “Toxic” singer was seemingly leaving her kids (and undergarments) at home, while she was busy roaming around Hollywood and causing choas. In one instance in early 2008, Spears allegedly left her white Mercedes in the middle of the road when she got a flat tire. “It was blocking the roadway,” one officer from the Los Angeles Police Department told People. A few months later, Spears was accused of causing a three-car pile-up on the Ventura Freeway in Los Angeles when she rear-ended a vehicle, which in turn, hit the car in front of it. “Britney just appeared to lose concentration,” a bystander reportedly told Contact Music. Spears also has been charged with a hit and run, driving without a valid license, and was under fire as well for running over a paparazzo’s foot, driving with her baby on her lap, and later, wrongly installing a car seat. She was eventually banned from driving with her sons in the car, The Daily Mail reported. Spears’ driving debacles gave new meaning to her debut track, “(Hit Me) Baby One More Time.”

Newscom

Enrique Iglesias

Enrique Iglesias left a radio performance in 2007 as fans frantically swarmed his car. The result: he ran over an 11-year-old girl’s foot. The young (presumably former) fan’s mom filed legal papers over the accident, but Iglesias claims it was the mother’s fault for “ not adequately supervising her and protecting her from harm.” The incident served as a warning to those who want to “Bailamos” with Iglesias: beware his blind spot.

RIV / Fame Pictures

Nicole Richie

When she was arrested for a DUI after driving the wrong way down a Burbank freeway, Richie told cops she hadn’t ingested any alcohol—just some pot and Vicadin. She paid her debt to society by spending 82 minutes behind bars (even though it was her second DUI and she’d been sentenced to four days). Her probation would have been up this month, but she was too busy taking care of her children, Sparrow and Harlow, to be able to make all those alcohol education classes. Even her star DUI lawyer (Lindsay Lohan used the same one) couldn’t fix it—a Los Angeles judge extended her probation until March 2011. Still, Richie is allowed to be on the road—hopefully, on the right side. 
 
Billy Joel

Peter Kramer / AP Photo; Thomas Phillips / AP Photo

Billy Joel

Billy Joel gained notoriety beyond songwriting in the early 2000s when his substance-abuse problems led to a series of car accidents on Long Island. The first happened in East Hampton in June 2002, after which he checked himself into an alcohol rehab clinic. The second occurred a year later, when he crashed his Mercedes into a tree and was hospitalized. The third, which left him with only a small cut, happened when he plowed his 1967 Citroen into a house. “I can’t believe I got in another accident,” he said. Seemingly, third time is a charm—his record has been clean since.

Jean Baptiste Lacroix, WireImage / Getty Images

Paris Hilton

After being arrested for a DUI (and subsequently driving with a suspended license) and doing 23 days of hard time, socialite Paris Hilton doesn’t seem to have been rehabilitated. She shrugged off the drunk-driving incident to Ryan Seacrest on his KIIS-FM morning show, saying, “It was nothing.” But she did make an artful, interactive PSA to educate teens against drunk driving—as they say, you teach what you need to learn. A few months ago, she was caught driving in the bike lane, but was let off by a lenient officer with just a warning. Maybe he should have been more strict. 


Fame Pictures

Shia LaBouef

Shia LaBeouf learned the hard way that he can’t do what his action flick stunt replacements can do. The Transformers star almost permanently maimed his hand in 2008. And though his fingers remain intact, the incident lead to a drunk-driving arrest. He was later found not to have been responsible for the crash, but had to undergo multiple surgeries to regain movement in his left hand. LaBeouf’s license was suspended, but the 24-year old actor was subsequently seen riding a scooter with his injured hand. Lesson seemingly not learned. 

Bret Thompsett, Josephine Santos / Pacific Coast News

Charlie Sheen

Charlie Sheen likes to live dangerously—or, at least, whoever stole his two Mercedes-Benzes does. Within a five-month time span this past year, both cars belonging to the actor were found down a cliff near his home in the Hollywood Hills. In June, Los Angeles police discovered the second vehicle after receiving a report that a car went over a cliff on Mulholland Drive. In February, the same thing happened. But car problems have never been far from Sheen. His 25-year-old ex-wife, Brooke Mueller, has had her share of automobile trouble, too. In 1996, Mueller crashed her Chevy Corsica into a road sign and was arrested for driving under the influence and causing damage to the property. The case against her was ultimately dropped. How nice that two dangerous drivers found each other.