Joys of being a woman driver

Since childhood, Yiu Chau-leung has been fascinated by trams and has a valuable collection of miniature trams and old tram tickets.

She joined Hongkong Tramways in 1994 and is now one of the 28 women tram drivers on Hong Kong Island.

'Hongkong Tramways started recruiting women drivers in the 1970s. So when I saw the relevant job advertisement later on, I immediately filed my application with the company. I was very happy for being admitted.' Ms Yiu said.

Over the years, she has witnessed many changes in tram history - from the design and features of the vehicle and interior fixtures and fittings, to the control system.

'In the past, operating a tramcar required more physical strength as the vehicle was driven by a mechanical control system.

'Nowadays, all tramcars are equipped with electronic-computerised technology. So strong physique is no longer a big concern,' she said.

Ms Yiu loves her job.

'Even if I won the Mark Six, I would still come back to work,' she said.

'It is a wonderful experience to drive with a gentle breeze puffing on your face, as well as greeting the many young smiling faces after school. I hope I can keep my job until my retirement.'

She has also had some interesting experiences.

'One day last year, I met an unusual passenger who had a free ride with me for more than two hours - a parrot,' she said.

'It was perched on the right wing mirror all the way from Quarry Bay to Sheung Wan and then back to Shau Kei Wan.'