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September 10, 2019

Kevin Hart's car crash could lead to change in California law

North Philly native remains hospitalized with spinal injuries

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0905_Kevin Hart Thom Carroll/PhillyVoice

Kevin Hart, pictured here in Philadelphia in 2017, is recovering from surgery to repair three spinal fractures suffered in a car crash in California during Labor Day weekend.

Actor and comedian Kevin Hart remains hospitalized in Los Angeles, but he's back on his feet after a serious car crash earlier this month left him with three spinal fractures and a long road ahead to recovery. 

Hart was in the passenger seat of his custom 1970 Plymouth Barracuda when the driver of the two-door muscle car lost control, plowing through a fence and flipping off Mulholland Highway in Malibu. The crushed roof of the car trapped North Philly-native Hart and his two passengers inside. 

A report over the weekend indicated that Hart's car was not fitted with a five-point harness or a roll cage, both of which would likely have minimized injuries. The roll cage, in particular, would have prevented the roof from caving in on them, experts told TMZ. 

As part of the crash investigation, law enforcement sources now tell TMZ that the California Highway Patrol will disassemble and examine Hart's car as part of their protocol. Officials may recommend that legislators require custom and restored classic cars to be equipped with five-point safety harnesses. 

Hart has not yet publicly addressed the crash, but his good friend and "Jumanji" co-star Dwayne Johnson filled in for him Monday on "The Kelly Clarkson Show," and attempted to inject some humor into the situation. 

"These things happen in life and thankfully he was strapped in nicely to his car seat," Johnson said, adding that he had spoken to the "pediatrician" about Hart's condition. The two have a history of making jokes about Hart's height, especially in comparison to Johnson.

Hart, 40, underwent surgery after the crash and is expected to face months of rehab to recover from his injuries. His next film, "Jumanji: The Next Level" is set to premiere Dec. 20.