Team Ineos principal Dave Brailsford told Cycling News: "It sounds like he was at the foot of the descent, and it's obviously very gusty today, and he took his hands off the bars to blow his nose and the wind has taken his front wheel".
Later on Wednesday, Team INEOS confirmed Froome sustained "multiple serious injuries" as a result of the crash.
Britain's four-times victor of the Yellow Jersey was airlifted to hospital with multiple injuries - including a broken leg, broken elbow and fractured ribs - after a crash that shook cycling.
Four-time Tour de France victor Christopher Froome is out of this year's race after a serious accident while training, his manager has confirmed to French television. "He is now being airlifted to St Etienne University Hospital for further treatment", Team INEOS doctor Richard Usher said in the statement.
Froome's wife Michelle said Froome was involved in a "high-speed crash" while scoping out the route for Wednesday's time trial around Roanne. He hit the wall at 60km/h and fractured his leg, elbow and ribs.
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"One of our big strengths on this team is coming together in hard moments, and we will ensure we do everything possible to support Chris and his family".
Froome won the Dauphine before his Tour wins in 2013, 2015 and 2016.
Seeking a fourth win in the key preparation race, Froome was eighth in the Dauphine standings, 24 seconds behind leader Dylan Teuns of Belgium.
This year's Tour de France embarks from Brussels on July 6 and the loss of the iconic four time victor will shake up ambitions at several teams. Long-time Froome teammate Geraint Thomas is the defending champion.