Jay Leno Is Reportedly Dealing With A Serious Injury Due To Car Fire

Though he’s no longer a late-night TV host, Jay Leno has kept himself plenty busy over the past few years. He’s mostly done a number of public engagements that see him perform comedy. This past weekend, the 72-year-old star was set to appear at a convention, though the event organizers later said via email that he had to bow out due to a “serious medical emergency.” Now, according to a new report, Leno missed the convention because he was unfortunately in a car fire and is reportedly facing a serious injury. 

Jay Leno was in his personal garage, where he stores his vast collection of vehicles, this past Sunday when one of the cars suddenly burst into flames. According to TMZ, the fire unfortunately burned the left side of the TV personality’s face. One of the site’s sources also said, however, that the flames did not reach Leno’s eye or ear. Still, the news outlet's report seems to indicate that the injury is severe. It’s said that the Tonight Show veteran was later taken to Grossman Burn Center, which is where he’s reportedly staying, as of this writing. 

George Swift, a 15-year employee of the media giant, spoke to Access Hollywood and provided some insight into the situation. Swift stated that Jay Leno is "going to be fine" and that his injury is "not life-threatening," though he will need some time to bounce back. In terms of what actually happened, Swift -- who was not actually present when the accident happened -- says Leno was working on a steam car when he got sprayed by some gas, and it ignited. Swift reportedly learned all of this when Leno called him.

This past weekend, the comedy veteran was set to appear at the Financial Brand Forum 2022 in Las Vegas on Sunday. After he didn’t show up, the organizers sent out an email (which was obtained by People), in which they detailed what they knew of the situation. At that time, they would only say that the Emmy winner had experienced a “serious medical emergency”:

His family was not able to provide us very many details, but there was a very serious medical emergency that is preventing Jay from traveling. All we know is that he is alive, so our prayers go out to him and his family tonight.

Jay Leno said goodbye to The Tonight Show back in 2014, though he has returned on a few occasions since then. In one instance, he guest starred and humorously ripped Jimmy Fallon, his late-night successor. At other times, he’s popped in to help Fallon out.

In recent years, the actor and comedian has kept himself busy in a myriad of ways, aside from public engagements like the one he had lined up last weekend. He has most notably served as the host and EP of Jay Leno’s Garage, on which he reviews cars and motorcycles. In addition, he’s had guest spots on numerous shows like Tim Allen’s Last Man Standing –- during which the two stars engaged in a “car duel.” All the while, Leno does plenty of interviews in which he discusses aspects of his career (like his relationship with Jimmy Kimmel) or more recent events like Will Smith’s Oscars slap.

The Hollywood veteran will reportedly be taking it easy over the next several days, as he’s reportedly nixed his public engagements for the remainder of the week. One can only hope that Leno isn’t in too much pain and that he’ll recovery quickly and comfortably.

Erik Swann
Senior Content Producer

Covering superheroes, sci-fi, comedy, and almost anything else in film and TV. I eat more pizza than the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.