Brian Dornstreich, a youth hockey coach in Apple Valley, Minn., noticed something right away about the local rink attendant Monday night: His eyes were red, and his breath smelled like Red Bull. "He looked like I do when I have my allergy attacks," Dornstreich told the Minneapolis Star-Tribune. At the time, Dornstreich thought nothing of it. Although just before the game for 11-to-13 year-old players was to begin, Dornstreich thought it was odd that the attendant kept making stripes on the ice with the Zamboni, though the man did go back and fix the problem, after which the game was played.
Following the game, though, Dornstreich was approached by a parent who said the attendant was now "weaving all over, slurring his words," at which point Donstreich noticed the man had already pulled the machine back onto the ice. The man then "weaved across the ice erratically and smacked the machine hard against the boards," in the words of the Star-Tribune, which added:
About 25 minutes into what should have been a 10-minute job resurfacing the ice, the driver — a part-time employee of the city of Apple Valley — tried to maneuver the unwieldy machine into the arena garage. By then, coach Bryan Dornstreich had called 911.
The 34-year-old driver failed field sobriety tests and has three previous DWI convictions, but he was not charged as of late last night, which is why police have not released his name. A New Jersey judge ruled a few years back that driving a Zamboni is not subject to drunken driving statutes there, but state law in Minnesota does extend DWI charges to most things with motors, whether on the road or not. No word on whether the Apple Valley rink plans to hire a designated driver.