32 Saudi women graduate to pilot Haramain express train
Saudi Arabia’s first batch of 32 female drivers of the Haramain express train is now fully prepared to operate one of the fastest trains in the world.
The Saudi Railways Company (SAR) celebrated the graduation of 32 Saudi women in a historic moment with a film montage, showing the women receiving instructions from the trainers and exchanging their experiences with the world.
On Sunday, January 1, 2023, SAR shared a video clip on Twitter, showing part of the training processes that trainees go through to be qualified to drive trains.
The post said, “Today, we are marking a new step in terms of localizing competencies and empowering women in our pioneering sector, and we are happy to launch the first phase of the program to prepare #Haramain_Express_Train Leaders, to continue our steps in supporting national cadres to achieve the goals of the National Strategy for Transport and Logistics”
The women train captains also cheered the achievement of becoming the first female train drivers in the Middle East, saying that transporting pilgrims and visitors gives them the motivation to work with great care.
In the coming stages, the number of Saudi men and women drivers will be increased, as it is expected that the demand will grow significantly during the next few years for travel by train, especially during the Haj and Umrah seasons.
Until recently, job opportunities for Saudi women were limited to jobs such as teachers and medical workers, where they had to adhere to strict gender segregation rules.
Since Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman came to power in 2017, he has insisted on opening up the kingdom by diversifying the country’s economy and relaxing many gender-based rules.