mi-ns-harold-conrad

Harold Conrad said he was almost decapitated as he was driving his ATV in First South last month. (CBC)

A 65-year-old man has been charged after an all-terrain vehicle driver ran into a barbed wire, seriously injuring his neck.

Harold Conrad said he was almost decapitated as he was driving his ATV in First South, outside Lunenburg, last month. Conrad was clotheslined, meaning he ran into a line of barbed wire that was stretched across his path.

"It took me right off, it broke the back seat of my buggy from where it took me clean off of it," Conrad told CBC News on Thursday.

"I didn't know anything until I came to on the ground."

Conrad is now living with his girlfriend in Halifax as he continues to recover from surgery, which included inserting two steel plates into his voice box.

"They put a trach in and I was in the operating room for three and a half hours undergoing constructive surgery," Conrad said.

"All the bones and cartilage was all destroyed in the front of my neck."

Conrad was driving to his shift at a dairy farm on his ATV when he was caught by the barbed wire that was strung at neck height. He'd been using the path for about two months.

Loraine Cook, 65, is due in court in Bridgewater on July 18 to face charges of criminal negligence causing bodily harm and setting traps likely to cause bodily harm.

Ownership of land disputed 

Cook lives in a house near the path in question and has been disputing its use and ownership with Allan Croft, a local farmer and Conrad's employer.

"[Cook] has been blocking it off," Croft said of the path.

"This time he used wire and he caught the wrong person. It was meant for somebody else."

Staff Sgt. Bruce Hill, with the Lunenburg County District RCMP, said land disputes are a matter that should be settled in a civil court.

"Not people taking it into their own hands and setting wires across trails, in this instance,  or any kind of trap that could injure or kill somebody," he told CBC News.

Conrad said after he was struck by the wire, he managed to get up and drive to his workplace and contact police.

He said he remembers seeing Cook, moments after he was thrown off his ATV.

"I looked over at his rear patio deck and there he was standing, looking at me," said Conrad.

"He never came over to see if I was alright, he saw me there rolling around on the ground, he just left me there for dead. He just walked away into his house."