Drunken Zamboni driver gets jail time

Thursday June 4th, 2015

Having a few too many and then sliding into the driver’s seat of a Zamboni might not be a problem in New Jersey, but authorities in North Dakota take a dimmer view of such on-ice shenanigans.

Steven James Anderson learned that the hard way. The 27-year-old Fargo resident was convicted on Tuesday after he admitted to being drunk while operating the ice-resurfacing machine during a girl’s high school hockey game back in January.

Anderson was sentenced to nine days in jail, with credit for one day served, and ordered to pay a $1,500 fine. He’ll also have to undergo chemical dependency evaluation and participate in the state’s 24/7 sobriety program.

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His defense attorney argued that the law is unclear as to whether a Zamboni is considered a vehicle, and whether it’s even illegal to operate it while intoxicated. The judge was unswayed, deciding that the spirit of the law had been violated after Anderson was observed crashing hard into the end boards and having his blood-alcohol content measured at nearly four times the legal limit for driving a motor vehicle.

At least there’s a happy ending to the story. Anderson “has made a lot of changes in the last four or five months,” according to his attorney and is moving on with his life.

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