Farmer Convicted of Dangerous Operation of Tractor


A farmer was driving a tractor at 30-35 kilometers per hour along a rutted gravel and dirt road. Without slowing down, he drove the tractor through a narrow opening between two trailers, barely missing both. He then drove toward a constable, ignored motions and shouts to stop, and drove within a few meters of the constable’s vehicle before making an evasive manoeuvre to avoid it. The farmer then drove up onto a narrow berm, next to and above another constable in his cruiser, putting the officer in fear for his own safety, before the tractor did, in fact, roll off the berm. The farmer was convicted of dangerous operation of a motor vehicle and appealed. The appeal court found that the trial court’s conclusion that the farmer’s driving was a “marked departure from what would be expected from a prudent driver in similar circumstances” was reasonable [R. v. Clare, [2013] ONCA 377 (CanLII),  June 6, 2013].