Driving under the influence of drugs and/or alcohol is one offense that cops don’t take lightly, especially when children are in danger — and thanks to one Zamboni driver in Fargo, North Dakota, the country is being reminded that drunk driving charges can occur in the most unexpected situations.
According to police reports, the Davies High School girls’ hockey team was playing the Williston High School team on Friday, January 30th, at the Fargo South Sports Arena. A spectator watching the game noticed that the Zamboni, a large machine that cleans ice shavings and smooths the surface of the rink during breaks in play, was being driven in an “erratic” manner.
The New York Daily News reports that the Zamboni was “weaving on the ice” during a break, and that it crashed into the sideboards of the rink before the ice was cleaned off completely. The staff at the Fargo South Sports Arena was alerted to the questionable Zamboni behavior, and the Fargo Police Department was called into the rink at around 8 p.m. that evening.
The Zamboni driver, 27-year-old Steven Anderson, was arrested by Fargo Police under the suspicion of DUI. Anderson had been a part-time employee at the Fargo Park District for six years.
Although it appears that no players were on the ice at the time, and no one (including Anderson) was injured, ABC News explains that he could face up to 30 days in jail and a $1,000 fine if convicted.
“For a DUI, all an individual needs is a piece of equipment with two wheels or more that has an engine. It can be a golf cart, a motorcycle, or even a zamboni. If you’re sitting behind the wheel and the key is in ignition, then you’re at risk of getting a DUI,” says Amir Soleimanian, owner and founder of Mr. Ticket.
Anderson has since been let out of the County Jail on bail, but he isn’t about to go back to driving a Zamboni anytime soon. Jim Larson, the director of finance and human resources for the Fargo Park District, has confirmed that Anderson was fired immediately and that the Park District has a zero-tolerance policy for drinking on the job.