A WINTER roads warning has been issued after almost half of vehicles on the A7 were found to have either defects or out-of-date documents.

And in the first week of a drink-driving clampdown police have already made two arrests.

During checks a fortnight ago on the A7 between Selkirk and Galashiels problems were found with almost every second vehicle.

Police pulled in a total of 76 cars, vans and lorries as part of Operation Alternate on Thursday, November 23.

And what they found was frightening - with only 36 motorists allowed to progress without any prosecution or warning.

Three drivers weren't allowed to continue on their journeys due to the conditions of their vehicles.

Prohibition notices were issued for worn tyres, brake and steering problems, and dangerous corrosion.

Another vehicle was seized due to no insurance, with a further three vehicles found not to have valid MOT certificates.

With temperatures plummeting and forecasts for snow on the way officers have issued a warning.

PC Conal McEwan said: "It is every driver's responsibility to make sure their vehicle is roadworthy.

"It can be difficult enough driving in wintry conditions without having faults.

"The road checks carried out on the A7 were for all types of vehicles - from HGVs down to family cars."

During the Lindean layby checks by officers from Police Scotland's Divisional Road Policing Unit and Trunk Road Patrol Group, with assistance from the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency, a further three Vehicle Defect Rectification notices were issued.

And 24 further warnings for minor defects were handed out.

Officers also issued five warnings to drivers for document offences.

The startling statistics were revealed just days after the launch of a nationwide festive season drink-driving campaign.

Roads officers have stepped up patrols in an effort to force drinkers to leave their cars at home.

But in the first week of the campaign two arrests have already been made.

Last Wednesday police were called to Dryburgh Abbey at around 9.15pm after a Peugeot 3008 collided with a wall.

The 38-year-old male driver was charged with drink driving and is scheduled to appear at Selkirk Sheriff Court next Monday.

Last Thursday a 54-year-old biker was also charged with drink driving in Newcastleton.

Local inspector Tony Hodges said: "We have increased resources deployed currently to identify drink and drug drivers and should you be caught, you will be arrested and you will lose your licence.

"This could have serious implications on both your professional and personal life.

"Please do not risk it. If you have been taking anything that inhibits your ability to drive then do not get behind the wheel."