The 72-year-old talk show legend was riding a vintage motorcycle in Las Vegas on January 17 when he pulled into a parking lot and was taken out by a piece of wire that had been strung across the roadway without any sign hanging off it to draw attention to it.
The injuries come in the wake of him being left with third-degree burns over his upper body and part of his face when a fire broke out during an automobile repair he was carrying out last November.
Referring to the 2022 fire in an interview with the Las Vegas Review-Journal, he said: “That was the first accident. OK? Then just last week, I got knocked off my motorcycle. So I’ve got a broken collarbone. I’ve got two broken ribs. I’ve got two cracked kneecaps. But I’m OK! I’m working.
“I turned down a side street and cut through a parking lot, and unbeknownst to me, some guy had a wire strung across the parking lot but with no flag hanging from it.
“So, you know, I didn’t see it until it was too late. It just clothesline me and, boom knocked me off the bike.”
Leno and his friend Dave Killackey had been working on repairing a fuel line on his 1907 White Steam Car when the vehicle burst into flames. Luckily for the television personality, Killackey leaped on top of his pal and wrapped his arms around Leno, smothering the fire and putting it out.
The former ‘Tonight Show’ host – who presented the motoring series ‘Jay Leno’s Garage’ from 2014 until 2022 – was taken immediately to the Grossman Burn Center in West Hills Hospital in Los Angeles where he was treated for third-degree burns and spent 10 days receiving treatment, which included skin grafts from a skin bank.
Recalling the terrifying moment in a previous interview, he shared: “The fuel line was clogged so I was underneath it. It sounded clogged and I said, ‘Blow some air through the line,’ and so he did. And suddenly, boom, I got a face full of gas. And then the pilot light jumped and my face caught on fire.”
Leno is recovering well from all his injuries and is set to make his return to the stage on March 31 at the Encore Theater at the Wynn hotel in Las Vegas.