No more Mr. Ice Guy: End of the road for Zamboni snow-clearing effort

In an act of kindness that’s being described as quintessentially Canadian, Central Saanich farmer Marko Kardum said he and a friend took a Zamboni  on a steep cul-de-sac Monday night to help clear snow so that his aunt could get out of her driveway.

The 32-year-old’s oh-so-Canadian response to Greater Victoria’s snow woes has become a viral hit on social media, with news coverage across the country.

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Kardum said he bought the Zamboni for $300 in an online auction with the idea of using it for day-to-day duties on the farm, such as spreading manure.

“It was $300, how could I not buy it?”

On Monday night when the snow was piling up, he decided to test out its snow-clearing abilities on Tanner Ridge Place.

“We had that heavy snow [Monday] night, so we wanted to see if the Zamboni would do a better job. So we took it out and we got it up to my aunt’s house and back — and that’s when we got pulled over,” he said.

It seems his well-meaning deed resulted in a call to the police, and soon a Central Saanich officer was on scene. This being Central Saanich, Kardum knew the officer.

“He said: ‘Hello, Mr. Kardum.’ And I said: ‘Hi, Sgt. Brailey.’ ”

Sgt. Paul Brailey told Kardum there’s no insurance on the Zamboni, so if there were an accident, he’d be liable.

Brailey told the Times Colonist that while the Zamboni successfully cleared the top layer of snow, it flattened the bottom layer, which could harden into ice if the temperature dropped.

The officer escorted Kardum down Tanner Ridge Place and back to his farm on Central Saanich Road. Kardum did not get a ticket.

He usually clears his aunt’s driveway with an old-fashioned snowblower, but he said the Zamboni was “working like a champ.”

Kardum said he didn’t expect his Zamboni adventure to attract this much attention. “It wasn’t anything planned,” he said.

Kardum, a Tim Hortons coffee in hand, said that from now on, he’ll limit the Zamboni to the confines of his farm.

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