Spieth sliced his tee shot more than 60 yards right, over a tall sand dune near the driving range.
From there, he took an unplayable drop for a one-shot penalty and was faced with three options: go back to the tee, take a drop within two club lengths, or go back as far as he wished from the hole in a straight line with the unplayable lie.
Spieth ended up taking an unplayable lie, but in doing so eventually ended up on the Royal Birkdale driving range, between the 13th and 15th fairways and behind several trailers.
An animated Spieth then jogged around that area to check out the obstructions. Initially, he seemed to be asking R&A rules officials for a suspended camera structure to be taken into consideration.
Then the conversation seemed to focus on the trailers, deemed as temporary movable constructions, apparently in a bid to be granted further relief and a free drop. He was allowed this, enabling him to move his ball away from the trucks.
The bizarre sequence played out in slow motion as Spieth took more than 20 minutes before hitting his shot. The 3-iron from the range was a blind shot that cleared the dune and ended up in front of a bunker short of the green.
Spieth then pitched up and made a 6-foot putt for a remarkable bogey.
Kuchar made par on the hole to stay 8 under.
China's Li Haotong was in the clubhouse 2 shots out of the lead after making birdies on the last four holes for a 7-under 63.
ESPN's Leo Spall contributed to this report.