Men vs women: Who are better UAE drivers?

The argument about whether men or women are the best drivers has rumbled on for years - and a survey by authorities in the UAE has only added to the debate.

Male and female drivers across the Emirates were polled and the findings show the gender divide on who rules the roads is as wide as ever.

Nearly half of the 750 (375 men and 375 women) motorists surveyed - 44 per cent - believe men are better drivers, with only 10 per cent insisting women are better behind the wheel. Forty-six per cent believe gender does not play a role in driving standards.

However, male motorists should stop and think before bragging, as they’re also considered the most dangerous on UAE roads - 67 per cent of those surveyed said men are more reckless and drive too fast, while 59 per cent said women are too cautious.

In the survey, conducted by 999 magazine, a UAE Ministry of Interior and Abu Dhabi Police publication, 63 per cent of respondents agreed with the statement that women are bad at parking, 17 per cent disagreed.

A magazine spokesman said: “The survey shows there is a perception about men versus women in driving skills. Although nearly half of UAE residents believe gender does not play a defining role in determining who is the better driver - a fact reflected in official statistics - a big portion of the public still remains divided on this.”

Lt Colonel Awadh Saleh Al Kindi, editor-in-chief of 999 added: “Official figures do not show a skill gap between men and women. Driving skills depend on personality, awareness and experience, not gender.”

So are the findings on the finer points of motoring a true reflection of life on the open road?

Lesley Cully, founder of UAE road safety campaign group Buckle Up in the Back, said: “It’s interesting that these results were from a balanced base of men and women respondents. If you asked my husband then me, you’d probably also get a very different opinion!

“I, of course, am amazing at parking and directions whereas my husband is not but then I’m sure he’d tell you otherwise! Seriously, though, it’s up to all of us to become less aggressive on the roads and more responsible for our driving.”

Bobby Easow of Drive Dubai driving school, which opens for business today, said: “Your driving attitude is what makes you a good driver. There is a common notion that men are more aggressive while driving and that women are too careful. This is not true.”

“Driving attitude is something that is unconsciously absorbed and cultivated while driving on the roads,” he added.

“In countries like India where most city roads have no clear lane markings and minimal lane discipline, you will notice drivers giving way to lane-cutters and even pedestrians.

“You will also notice a low number of accidents in spite of the lack of proper infrastructure and ‘chaotic’ driving. This is in contrast with the driving in the UAE where many cases of road rage and aggressive-driving related accidents have been recorded even though the quality of the infrastructure.

“A higher emotional intelligence with the right attitude is what makes a better driver.”

Women vs Men

Who are more prone to accidents due to using mobile phone while driving?

Men - 23 per cent

Women - 21 per cent

Gender doesn’t play role - 56 per cent

Who are more prone to accidents due to changing lanes without indicating?

Men - 37 per cent

Women - 20 per cent

Gender doesn’t play role - 43 per cent

Who are more prone to accidents due to speeding?

Men - 69 per cent

Women - 9 per cent

Gender doesn’t play role - 22 per cent

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