APPLE VALLEY, Minn. (WCCO) — A 34-year-old man was arrested Monday night after he was allegedly driving a Zamboni while drunk at a hockey game in Apple Valley, according to police.

Authorities were called to Hayes Arena in Apple Valley at about 8:06 p.m. Monday from people at the arena who were reporting that the Zamboni driver appeared to be drunk.

“The coaches noticed he was off the mark quite a ways, bumping into the boards and having trouble maneuvering the machine and thought they need to call someone for help,” said Randy Johnson, Apple Valley’s Parks and Recreation Director. “They knew something was wrong. He was not operating it like he normally does.”

One man who was at the Arena said he saw the driver with the water ‘off’ during four laps. The typical 10 minute job, he said, took 25 minutes to finish. “He just couldn’t drive a straight line,” according to the man.

When authorities arrived, they saw that the driver, 34-year-old Joel Keith Bruss of Apple Valley, struggling to maneuver the Zamboni around the ice.

Officers made contact with Bruss after the Zamboni came off the ice. Bruss is a part-time worker at the arena. Authorities said Bruss was unsteady on his feet and smelled of alcohol. After field sobriety testing, he was arrested for DWI.

Authorities said blood alcohol level testing was done at the Apple Valley Police station. Test results have been submitted to the Bureau of Criminal Apprehension for analysis and have not yet been released.

Johnson said that when Bruss started his shift around 4 p.m., nothing was wrong with him. “He’s been a good employee. He’s been dependable,” Johnson said.
Bruss has been suspended from his position.

A check of Bruss’s criminal background shows that he was guilty of at least three other drunk driving cases. He was guilty of DWI in 2002 as well as two other DWI’s in 1999, one in April and one in July. He was also guilty of minor consumption in 1998.

Comments (35)
  1. anti bachmann says:

    dwi ya what a joke

    1. Umpire Ted says:

      The Referee was also drunk while officiating the game.

    2. Umpire Ted says:

      The Referee was also drunk while officiating the game.

      1. Mitch says:

        And at least one coach, if not both, and a couple players. Not the goalies though. Oh! and a few moms and dads in the stands! Oh! and the janitor! And… there’s a chance one of the cops still had some in his system. Actually, a pretty good chance.

  2. Jack Boardman says:

    Imagine the carnage this drunken Zamboni driver could have caused…

    1. Guest says:

      Just like if a NASCAR crashed into the stands huh?

      Oh wait,you could outrun a Zamboni

  3. Jeff Sensers says:

    suspect the people called after they saw the “I graduated from Amy’s Driving School” on the side of the Zamboni. One never knows where he may have headed with that sucka when he scooted off the ice. To may walking about to take a Senser like chance.

  4. boomhauer says:

    Can’t even drive your lawn tractor around with a few beers in ya without getting a DWI these days, man.

    1. Brett says:

      God help us…..

    2. laughingatu says:

      I’ve never heard of anything so ridiculous in my life. This is where they spend your tax dollars folks….arresting drunk zamboni drivers LMAO!!!

  5. Crazy Joe says:

    I have done that,Its fun. No big deal

    1. ZWI says:

      It’s everyone’s dream!

  6. See BS says:

    Court Order him into a $2,000 Stewart Smalley “Group Hug” program and if he can’t afford it — let Rule 25 State of Minnesota pay for it.

    Mental Health uses court ordered “Stockholm Syndrome” to get people to buy their way out of jail.

  7. Kirk Allen Larson says:

    I didn’t know Hayes Arena was an “Increased DWI Enforcement Stadium” (an IDWIES) Where were you guys the day before the Giants played the Packers? You could have really made a lot of mone……I mean….served social justice with all those drunken motorized shovelers!!

    Mommy, why is that Man driving around on the ice between periods? Dear, that man is just Drunk so let him be.

  8. Andy says:

    Are you kidding me?! What a joke apple valley. The people at the arena that called, get a life!

    1. The Gags says:

      The only thing that is a joke are your pathetic comments. You gotta get help for that PTSD.

      1. anti bachmann says:

        gags your probably one of the lifeless people that called the cops

  9. 600xcsp says:

    This charge will never stick. He was not on the road. His lawyer is
    going to have a field day with this. Stupid cops. What a waste.

    1. truth is says:

      Actually it will. Chekc the law, it states that any self propelled vehicle that has a motor. Last I checked, Zambonis are self propelled. You can also get a DWI driving a riding law mower, golf cart, ATV and a go cart. Bottom line is, you wanna drink, stay out from behind the wheel.

  10. mkp says:

    People just sit around looking for a reason to raise that cell phone to their ear.

  11. I_hate_mini_vans says:

    Let’s face it… this Zamboni driver guy is a complete i.d.i.o.t. – there’s really not much to say here. And for all of you that are blaming everyone else (i.e. the pigs and the people who called this in) need counseling.

    1. Gangsta Kevin says:

      Yo git back in yo’ minivan cruize ova uh cliff an’ stop commenting an don’t make me pull mah gat!

      1. I_hate_mini_vans says:

        Gangsta Kevin, you’re a perfect example of why some people should never have kids… do the world a favor and get yoself fixed.

  12. Window says:

    I know a person who got a DUI on a motorized skate board. It stuck. He got 90 days….etc

  13. zannders says:

    and when h ws done he was just going to jump in his car and drive home…

  14. Ratterout says:

    When he ws done he was just going to jump in his car and drive home… hmmm would that be OK?

  15. Apple Valley Police are overpaid says:

    Wake up America. We are living under a Police State. Who was he going to hurt? No one. Was anyone in danger besides himself? No. The Apple Valley Police Department has nothing better to do than to waste our hard earned tax dollars. Pathetic.

    1. I_hate_mini_vans says:

      I think you need to wake up instead… Since when is it OK to drink on the job?? And where do you think he was going after he was done at the hockey game – probably in his car to go home. It wouldn’t be so pathetic if he killed someone then would it?? He clearly has a record of drinking related instances. If anything, our hard earned tax dollars are keeping i.d.i.o.t.s like this from hurting others whether it’s on a zamboni or not.

      1. jen jen says:

        exactly, is it better for tax dollars to be to pay someone to sit at the rink and drink. that is a waste of tax dollars

  16. Bill Paine says:

    how would randy johnson know he looked good to him….randy j. office is in another building on the other side of the parking lot….he sits in in office all day,,,,another great part time employee hired by randy and tom,,,the old saying about hiring part time employees goes, we dont care who we hire as long as they can fog a mirror we want them….great job of doing a back ground check,,,,,thats randy for you the cover up king,,,,,the biggest joke of a boss i ever worked for,,,,

  17. jackactionhero says:

    I was at this game. People were getting concerned because he couldn’t make it around the rink on the Zamboni. I use the word “concerned” because nobody knew at the time (some ventured guesses) that he was drunk.

    It took him almost a half hour to do a 10 minute job. It was excrutiating to watch. And to those who say “so what?” and “wasting tax dollars” he was going to get home how exactly?