Cambridge 17 IELTS General Reading Test 2

SECTION 1 Questions 1—14

Read the text below and answer Questions 1—5.

Want to rent a property?

Here is a brief description of some rental property agencies to choose from

A Aynho Properties

With over 50 years’ experience, we offer a comprehensive sales and lettings service. Our firm has been based in Shipton Street since its foundation and so we have a thorough knowledge of the surrounding neighborhood. Our staff make every effort to match clients’ needs to an appropriate property, whether you are looking to rent an apartment, a bungalow or a house.

B Danesdale Agency

As soon as you walk in our door, we will make every effort to find the right flat for you to rent. Everything we do is based on good practice — you supply written references and pay the rent on time, and in return we’ll visit the property every four months to ensure it is maintained and that any necessary repairs are done.

C Jakesford Properties

As a family—run business with over 20 years’ experience in the property market, we pride ourselves on treating every client with kindness and consideration. The landlords on our books have been selected with great care so that you can be sure they will look after your interests. Thousands of customers from all over the world have written to us to express their appreciation for the service we have offered them.

D Kasama Letting

Our highly experienced team works hard to provide peace of mind for both tenants and landlords. James Kettering, our customer liaison officer, is always at the end of the phone to answer any queries you may have. We also have an administration officer, who deals with contracts, rents and personal queries.

E Leftfield Letting

While the main objective of some letting agents is to get as much money as possible for their properties, we aim to secure a fair deal for tenants and a trouble-free service for landlords. We use modern marketing techniques that include price comparisons for similar properties with other agencies in the area so that you can make a fully informed decision.

Read the text below and answer Questions 6—14.

Cycle lights

What are the legal requirements?

You must have approved front and rear lights that are lit, clean and working properly when cycling between sunset and sunrise. It’s no defence to say that it was past sunset but not yet dark. The legal lighting obligations for cyclists are determined by sunset and sunrise times — not the ‘hours of darkness’, which start 30 minutes after the former, end 30 minutes before the latter and dictate when motorists must switch from sidelights to headlights.

Cycling UK’s guide to cycling regulations explains the Road Vehicles Lighting Regulations in detail, but in summary you need a white light at the front and a red light at the rear, visible from the front and rear respectively and fixed to your bike. A light obscured by a saddlebag isn’t legal and neither is a torch on your head, though there’s nothing to stop you using a head-torch as an additional light.

The regulations also now allow flashing lights, provided they flash between 60 and 240 times per minute. The legal requirements for reflectors include a red rear reflector and four amber pedal reflectors, one at the front and rear of each pedal. Common sense might suggest that a reflective heel strip or ankle band could replace an amber pedal reflector, but unfortunately these do not meet the legal requirements. This is an annoying problem for riders who use bikes where the feet are attached to the pedals and cannot slip. These pedals are not designed with enough space to accommodate reflectors and make this an area of legislation in need of change.

Unlike with other vehicles, lights are not a legal requirement for cyclists when there is seriously reduced visibility during the daytime, although we wouldn’t recommend cycling through dense fog without lighting up.

SECTION 2 Questions 15—27

Read the text below and answer Questions 15—20.

 Maintaining a safe environment for employees working on computers

Under health and safety law, you must ensure that the working environment meets certain minimum requirements

Workstation furniture

The work desk or work surface should be big enough to allow the user to arrange the screen, keyboard and documents, etc. in a flexible way. It should be stable and positioned so that it’s comfortable when an employee uses a document holder, but also big enough to let the user work comfortably and to alter their position.

The working environment

You need to assess noise levels. The equipment shouldn’t be so noisy that it distracts the user. If you can’t use quieter equipment, consider soundproofing or moving the equipment. You could use partitions between noisy equipment and the rest of the workstation as an alternative.

Lighting is also an important consideration. Surrounding windows must have curtains or blinds which users can adjust to prevent reflected glare. If needed, provide users with lighting appropriate to their tasks and particular workstation. Users should have control over their lighting to prevent reflected glare.

Temperature-wise, the equipment should not give out so much heat that the user becomes uncomfortable, so monitor this. It’s also important that you maintain ventilation, and you control humidity so that it is at a level which keeps the user comfortable.

 Task design and rest breaks

Good design of the task can be as important as the right choice of furniture and equipment. Whenever possible you should design jobs so that employees have a mix of activities and some control over which tasks they perform and when. You should match staffing levels to workload so that individuals are neither overworked nor underworked and give employees some say in the way work is carried out and the planning that goes into it.

An employee’s need for rest breaks will vary depending on the type of work they are doing and how intensely they are working. As a general rule, however, short, frequent breaks are better than longer, less frequent ones. A 5—10-minute break after 50—60 minutes’ work is better than a 15—20-minute break after two hours. The employee should, at times. has a choice over when to take breaks and they should be encouraged to do non-work activities during their break, ideally away from the workstation.

Read the text below and answer Questions 27—27.

Using portable ladders

Workers use portable ladders for a variety of jobs outside, such as first- and second-floor window cleaning and building repairs

Employers need to oversee all ladders that are owned by their company. Detailed visual inspections should be carried out on a regular basis, and they should have an up-to-date record of these. Before starting a job, employers are also responsible for ensuring any ladder is the right length to meet the needs of the task; reaching out from the very top of a ladder is highly dangerous. Once you get a ladder, you, as user of the ladder, should conduct a pre-use check each working day. Conducting pre—use checks should have been part of your training and should be done in accordance with the manufacturer’s guidelines. When doing a check, it is important to focus on the steps and make sure they are not loose as this could cause an accident. Similarly, a cracked joint in the ladder could cause it to fail.

Almost all falls from ladders happen because the ladder moves unexpectedly. The key factor in preventing falls from ladders is to ensure your ladder is stable whilst being used. First, make sure that you choose level ground on which to set up your ladder. There are specially designed tools you can use to ensure this — don’t just use a piece of wood. Second, check the ground surface is dirt-free and solid, so the feet can grip and the ladder doesn’t sink.

Before you go up your ladder, look at the surrounding environment. Make sure the ladder cannot be struck by vehicles. If necessary, safeguard the area by placing red and white cones around it. Ensure it will not be pushed over by other hazards such as opening doors. Doors and windows may need to be secured where possible. Finally, think about the hazards to the general public and make sure they cannot walk underneath it or get too near to it. A ‘danger’ sign at the base is often the best way of doing this.

To secure the ladder, tie it to a suitable point, such as a window or railing, making sure both sides are attached. Where this is not practical, secure it to the wall near the base of the ladder with ties; avoid using blocks to wedge the ladder in place as they can easily move.

SECTION 3 Questions 28—40

Read the text below and answer Questions 28—40.

The story of the Fosbury Flop

A On October 20, 1968, a 21-year-old university student from the USA called Dick Fosbury completely transformed the sport of high jumping with a gold-medal and Olympic-record jump of 2.24 meters at the Mexico City games. Fosbury accomplished this fabulous feat by sailing over the crossbar head first and backward! As colorfully described that clay by the Los Angeles Times, “Fosbury goes over the bar like a guy being pushed out of a 30-story window.”

B At first, when asked about how this unorthodox maneuver originated, Fosbury would joke with sportswriters, informing some that, because of his university background in physics and engineering, he had initially designed the Flop on paper, and telling others that he had accidentally discovered this technique when he once tripped and fell backward on his take-off. However, in later interviews, Fosbury revealed that the technique actually unfolded over many years and involved countless trials and errors. “It was simply a natural technique that evolved,” he said. “I never thought about how to change it, and I’m sure my coach was going crazy because it kept evolving. l didn’t know anyone else in the world would be able to use it.”

C Fosbury explained that when he first learned to high jump at the age of 10 or 11, he tried jumping with the “scissors” style. He said, “l used that style until l went into high school, where my coach explained that I was never going to get anywhere with that technique. He started me with the ‘belly roll’ technique. However, I was really lousy with that style. l expressed my frustration to coach and he said that if I really wanted, I could still use the ‘scissors.”

So, in his next competition, Fosbury went back to the “scissors” style. He explained: “As the bar was raised each time, I began to lift my hips up and my shoulders went back in reaction to that- At the end of the competition, I had improved my best by 15 cm to 1 m 78 and even placed third! The next two years in high school with my curved approach, I began to lead with my shoulder and eventually was going over head first like today’s floppers.”

D In this way, the Flop evolved, not from design, but from a trial-and-error process which combined repeated effort with the biomechanics of Fosbury’s gangling 1 m 93 physique. Sports Illustrated writer Richard Hoffer wrote: “It was on-site engineering, his body and mind working together, making reflexive adjustments with only one goal, getting over the bar.” Hoffer explained that although Fosbury’s arms and legs seemed to be all over the place, those movements that served to get him a centimeter higher were retained, while the others were gradually eliminated as the technique evolved.

E What did Fosbury think of the seeming awkwardness of his Flop? “I believe that the Flop was a natural style,” he said, “And I was just the first to find it. I can say that because the Canadian jumper Debbie Brill was a few years younger than I was and also developed the same technique only a few years after me and without ever having seen me.”

A striking coincidence? Yes indeed. But perhaps not as striking as the fact that a high school student called Bruce Quande was photographed on May 24, 1963 flopping backward over the crossbar. This was the same month that Fosbury recalls having flopped for the first time in the competition when he was at high school.

F But completing the Flop successfully was only half the battle the return to earth still had to be negotiated. Few would even consider such an experiment knowing they had have to land on their necks. When Fosbury was jumping in high school he had to land in pits which were filled with wood chips, sawdust or sand. On one occasion Fosbury hit his head on the wooden border or the pit. Another time he landed totally out of the pit, flat on his back knocking the wind out of him. The next year Fosbury’s high school became the first in the region to install foam rubber in its high jump pit thereby cushioning the jumper’s fall and encouraging the use of the potentially dangerous Flop. The Fosbury Flop and cushioned landing areas thus appear to have co-evolved.

G Fosbury explains how he came to name the Flop. “I am very proud that I received the naming rights. But the term by which the style is known did not appear overnight. To tell the truth the first time was that I was interviewed and asked ‘What do you call this?’ I used my engineering analytical side and I referred to it as a back lay out.’ It was not interesting and the journalist didn’t even write it down. I noted this. The next time that I was interviewed that’s when I said: ‘Well at home in my town they call it the Fosbury Flop’ – and everyone wrote it down. I was the first time to call it that but it came from a caption on a newspaper photo that said: “Fosbury flops over bar.’ The context was that our town was on a river, very popular for fishing an hour from the Pacific Ocean. And when you land a fish on the bank it’s flopping. That’s the action and so it’s a good description by a journalist and I remembered it.”

Questions 1—5

Look at the five descriptions of rental property agencies, A—E.

For which agency are the following statements true?

Write the correct letter, A—E, in boxes 1—5 on your answer sheet.

1 The agency expects customers to provide letters of recommendation.

2 The agency provides certain information on properties held by its competitors.

3 The agency began business in its present location.

4 Employees have specific roles at the agency.

5 The agency carefully chooses the property owners that it works with.

Questions 6—14

Do the following statements agree with the information given in the text ?

In boxes 6—14 on your answer sheet, write

TRUE if the statement agrees with the information

FALSE if the statement contradicts the information

NOT GIVEN if there is no information on this

6 It is illegal to cycle after sunset without bike lights.

7 Front and rear lights can be attached to the rider.

8 Atorch worn on a cyclist's head must be white.

9 There are some legal restrictions on flashing lights.

10 Reflectors are most commonly available in packs of four.

11 Reflective heel strips are allowed instead of pedal reflectors.

12 The law concerning the design of pedals is unsatisfactory.

13 Cycling during the daytime is safer than cycling at night.

14 It is against the law to cycle in daytime fog without lights.

Questions 15—20

Complete the notes below.

Choose ONE WORD ONLY from the text for each answer:

Write your answers in boxes 15—20 on your answer sheet.


Desk size should facilitate

  •  the flexible arrangement of computer items
  •  the easy use of a holder for documents
  •  change in the user’s 15


Employers should

  •  move, soundproof, or separate noisy equipment using 16
  •  reduce glare from nearby 17 e.g., using adjustable blinds
  •  provide suitable lighting
  •  ensure a comfortable temperature
  • check 18 from equipment
  • check air flow and quality in working area

Tasks and breaks

Employees should have

  •  a variety of tasks to choose from
  •  a fair workload
  •  An input into task achievement and 19
  •  regular, short breaks, at times of their own 20
  •  breaks not located at their workstation

Questions 21 —27

Complete the sentences below.

Choose ONE WORD ONLY from the text for each answer.

Write your answers in boxes 21—27 on your answer sheet.

Safe ladder use

21 Employers should keep a of ladder safety inspections.

22 Employers should check the of a ladder is suitable for the job.

23 The and joints of the ladder need particularly close inspection.

24 Make sure the of the ladder are resting on a clean, hard surface.

25 Protect the ladder from vehicles by using .

26 Use a to keep people away from the ladder.

27 Keep the ladder in place using ties, rather than .

Questions 28—32

The text has seven sections, A-G.

Which section mentions the following?

Write the correct letter, A—G, in boxes 28—32 on your answer sheet.

NB You may use any letter more than once.

28 a suggestion that Fosbury should change his way of jumping

29 a reference to an opportunity offered to Fosbury that made him feel honoured

30 a reference to the fact that Fosbury was a very influential high jumper

31 conflicting explanations given by Fosbury for the way the idea for the Fosbury Flop began

32 a reference to a time when Fosbury was dissatisfied with his athletic performance

Questions 33-36

Choose the correct letter, A, B, C or D.

Write the correct letter in boxes 33—36 on your answer sheet.

33 When interviewed about his development of the Fosbury Flop, Dick Fosbury

34 Fosbury achieved a sudden improvement in the height he could jump when he

35 When describing the way that Fosbury's jump evolved, Richard Hotter stressed that.

36 Fosbury defended his idea that his style of jumping was ‘natural' by pointing out that

Questions 37-40

Complete the summary below.

Choose NO MORE THAN TWO WORDS from the text for each answer.

Write your answers in boxes 37—40 on your answer sheet.

How the Fosbury Flop got its name

When first interviewed, Fosbury called his jumping style a 37 but he realised that this had not made an impression on the 38 . In his next interview, he used a name taken from the description given to a newspaper photo — and this was the name that everyone noted. He says the name was appropriate because his town is near a 39 and a 40 does a similar type of ‘flopping’ movement when brought to land.


1 B

2 E

3 A

4 D

5 C










15 position

16 partitions

17 windows

18 heat

19 planning

20 choice

21 record

22 length

23 steps

24 feet

25 cones

26 sign

27 blocks

28 C

29 G

30 A

31 B

32 C

33 D

34 A

35 B

36 D

37 back layout

38 journalist

39 river

40 fish

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very halpful

Very helpful. Thanks a lot

Very helpful to me

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