Drink-driving migrants are warned by new campaign

MIGRANT workers are being targeted by a new drink-drive campaign – after statistics showed a rise in foreign nationals convicted for the offence.

And Boston is one of the major areas to record this crime.

Workers from abroad make up one per cent of Lincolnshire’s working population, but figures show they are responsible for almost a third of drink-drive convictions.

“It is apparent that an increasing percentage of foreign nationals are beginning to show in the drink driving convictions,” said a statement from the Lincolnshire Road Safety Partnership.

“Thirty-two per cent (180 in 2010) of those convicted of driving whilst being impaired were foreign nationals.

“Those foreign nationals convicted were of Polish, Latvian and Lithuanian descent and live mainly (registered address on conviction) in the Boston and Spalding area of South Holland.”

In a bid to spread awareness to communities that don’t use English as a first language, the partnership has launched a poster and leaflet campaign.

Centred around the Boston and Spalding areas, information will be branded in shops, bars, pubs and in workplaces frequented by migrants.

They will also appear on street signs and on buses, and be written in Polish, Latvian and Lithuanian.

“This campaign is to educate these nationalities in relation to the drink drive law in the United Kingdom,” the statement added.

“This is probably one of our hardest groups to reach, and the aim of the campaign is to reduce the occurrences and incidents where foreign drivers are under the influence of drink therefore reducing the risk they pose to other road users.”

Last year in Lincolnshire, 120 people of all nationalities suspected of drink driving failed or refused to provide a breath, urine or blood sample to the police during the month of June alone.

Since April 2010, more than 17,000 people have been tested and 1,163 people were prosecuted.

Driving or attempting to drive while above the legal limit or unfit through drink carries a maximum penalty of six months’ imprisonment, a fine of up to £5,000 and a minimum 12 months driving ban.

An endorsement for a drink-driving offence remains on a driving licence for 11 years, so it is 11 years before a convicted driver will have a clean licence again.