When a young Saudi woman offered ‘free’ driving, traffic lessons

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In November last year, a young Saudi woman Noura al-Dosari took the drivers seat for a specific purpose. She used to drive around in the residential compound she lives in in the eastern city of Dhahran, as her daily routine.

As soon as Saudi Arabia allowed women to drive, Dosari launched a voluntary initiative to teach women to drive cars.

Encouraged by her family, she had learnt driving in 2010, in the Kingdom of Bahrain. She already held an international driving license.

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The initiative was widely accepted and welcomed by women, and around 15 Saudi women came forward to learn driving.

Noura spent more than five hours daily training them on driving lessons, using her private car.

In her interview with Al Arabiya.net, Dosari said she seeks through this initiative to enable the “new women drivers” with the required skills for proper and safe driving and help them understand the dangers of the road and to be aware of traffic in order to remain safe.

She also trains them to deal with emergency situations, be aware of simple maintenance issues, and how to deal with different traffic situations and dangers, within the training curriculum she had prepared for her trainees.

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Dosari added that the training program includes, besides the theoretical aspects, mock experiments to simulate real situations.

These may range from a sudden obstacle in the way, such as wheels, bags, or infants, bicycles, and speedy drivers who suddenly deviate from their tracks, blocking the road, or the passage of a police car or ambulance.

She highlighted the importance that the woman driving the car should be aware of the basics of the maintenance of a car. It does not need a technical specialist, she said.

According to her, woman drivers should also be aware of how to be safe on the road and how to deal with malfunctions and emergencies. Dosari uses this initiative to urge women to adhere to traffic rules.

She pointed out her interest in ensuring that the trainees are capable of driving and get over their fear of taking the wheel, and praised the enthusiasm of Saudi women.

They are learning how to drive quickly and efficiently as they are eager to get their driving license, added Dosary.

She said that allowing women to drive was one of the necessities of social change. It helps women rely on themselves, run their errands without waiting for a taxi, or hiring a driver. It will also allow women to join the labor force and attain economic independence, thus empowering women to strengthen the labor market.

Dosary praised the Saudi women who broke the stereotypes of women in the local community and wished she could encourage more women to learn to drive cars.

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