Drinking and Driving Among Undocumented Latino Immigrants in Miami-Dade County, Florida

J Immigr Minor Health. 2016 Aug;18(4):935-939. doi: 10.1007/s10903-015-0305-y.


There is concern that by failing to understand fully the risks associated with driving under the influence (DUI), some Latino immigrants-undocumented in particular-may be overrepresented in alcohol-related crashes. Until now, data on undocumented immigrants has been absent. Data came from an ongoing longitudinal sample of Latino immigrants to Miami-Dade County, FL. Descriptive analyses and regression techniques were applied. Compared with permanent residents, undocumented drivers are more likely to binge drink, less likely to understand DUI laws, and less likely to perceive the risks associated with DUI-three factors largely associated with high DUI rates. Despite facing these risk factors, undocumented immigrants showed low DUI rates, partly due to their limited amount of driving. Differences in risk perceptions and actual DUI events between Latino immigrants of different residency statuses suggest the possibility of early interventions aimed at reducing DUI among Latino immigrants.

Keywords: DUI; Latinos; Recent immigrants; Risk perceptions; Undocumented immigrants.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Binge Drinking / ethnology
  • Driving Under the Influence / ethnology*
  • Female
  • Florida
  • Hispanic or Latino / statistics & numerical data*
  • Humans
  • Longitudinal Studies
  • Male
  • Risk Assessment
  • Socioeconomic Factors
  • Undocumented Immigrants / statistics & numerical data*