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Chugging alone on an unusual track

Lives of ambulance drivers are always on the fast track, cutting through traffic and cheating time. Mamatha, one such driver in  Mandya, has the intense satisfaction of doing her bit in saving lives.

Published: 08th March 2017 02:06 AM  |   Last Updated: 08th March 2017 06:34 AM   |  A+A-

Mamatha started out driving a goods vehicle to the markets nearby | s udayashankar

Express News Service

BENGALURU: Lives of ambulance drivers are always on the fast track, cutting through traffic and cheating time. Mamatha, one such driver in  Mandya, has the intense satisfaction of doing her bit in saving lives.
Until her marriage, Mamatha did not know anything about driving. Her husband used to transport tender coconuts from the farm to nearby markets. “We owned a Tata Ace vehicle in which we used transport the coconuts. I used to accompany my husband often,” she said.

This eventually led to an interest in learning to drive. “My husband taught me to drive. I started driving the vehicle to markets and fell in love with driving. My husband was encouraging and it helped me gain confidence in driving bigger vehicles,” she said.
Unfortunately, owing to financial problems, the couple had to sell their vehicle. “I joined one of the largest garment factories in Mandya where I worked in the storage department. A few days later, my manager got to know that I knew driving. The factory has an ambulance service and the manager moved me there,” she said.
Mamatha said she used to take patients, especially employees from factories, to Mysuru and Bengaluru hospitals.

“It’s a different feeling when you are on the road. People make way for ambulances. When I am in the driver’s seat, the injured person is my only priority,” she said.
For the past few weeks, Mamatha has not been driving due to health reasons. “I work for the same firm, but not as an ambulance driver,” she said. Mamatha’s biggest wish is to own an ambulance vehicle. “I don’t want to do it for money, but as a service to people,” she said.

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