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A Disaster of Titanic Proportions Reading Answers: IELTS Reading Practice Test

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Updated on Jul 02, 2024, 11:57

The disaster of the Titanic is one of the most well-known tragedies in history, and it continues to capture the imagination of people worldwide. In this IELTS reading practice test, we will delve into the topic of disasters of titanic proportions, exploring a range of questions related to this important topic. 
 

Through this practice test, you will have the opportunity to build your reading comprehension skills while also gaining a deeper understanding of the impact of disasters on society. So, let's dive in and see what we can learn.

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1. A Disaster of Titanic Proportions Reading Passage

You should spend approximately 20 minutes answering Questions 1 - 13 based on the Reading Passage below.

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2. A Disaster of Titanic Proportions Reading Questions with Answers

Discover exciting and informative IELTS reading answers about A Disaster of Titanic Proportions

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1.

A Disaster of Titanic Proportions Reading Passage

General Instructions
General Instructions for IELTS Reading:

  • You will have 60 minutes to complete the entire reading test.
  • The test consists of three reading passages with a total of 40 questions.
  • The texts may be taken from books, magazines, journals, or newspapers.
  • You will receive an answer sheet and should write your answers on it.
  • The questions will be in different formats, such as multiple-choice, matching, sentence completion, and summary completion.
  • The reading passages will increase in difficulty as you progress through the test.
  • You cannot bring any electronic devices, including mobile phones, into the test room.

 

 

 

 

A Disaster of Titanic Proportions Reading Passage

 

 

Paragraph A

Lookouts Frederick Fleet and Reginald Lee on the Titanic's front mast spotted an eerie, black mass approaching into view immediately in front of the ship at 11:39 p.m. on Sunday, April 14, 1912. "Iceberg, right ahead!" Fleet exclaimed as he picked up the phone at the helm and waited for Sixth Officer Moody to answer. The worst maritime calamity in history was about to be set in motion.
 

Paragraph B

The Titanic struck a piece of submerged ice 37 seconds later, shattering rivets in the ship's hull and filling the first five watertight compartments, despite the attempts of personnel in the bridge and engine room to manoeuvre around the iceberg. Thomas Andrews, the ship's designer, conducted a visual survey of the ship's damage at midnight and warned Captain Smith that the ship would sink in less than two hours.
After Smith had given the order for the lifeboats to be opened and swung out 15 minutes earlier, the lifeboats were being loaded with women and children by 12:30 a.m. Only 28 of the 65 seats in the first lifeboat were occupied when it was successfully lowered 15 minutes later. The waterline was beginning to reach the Titanic's name on the ship's bow by 1:15 a.m., and every lifeboat would be released over the next hour as commanders tried to maintain discipline amid the mounting fear on board.
 

Paragraph C

The dosing moments of the Titanic's sinking occurred shortly after 2:00 a.m. when the last lifeboat was lowered, and the ship's propellers were taken out of the water, leaving 1,500 passengers to surge towards the ship's stern. Harold Bride and Jack Philips sent their final wireless message at 2:17 a.m. after being relieved of their duties as the ship's wireless operators and the ship's band ceased performing. Less than a minute later, lifeboat occupants saw the ship's lights flash once, then go out, and heard a tremendous roar that indicated the Titanic's cargo was diving towards the bow, causing the front half of the ship to break off and sink. The bow of the Titanic briefly rose, and at 2:20 a.m., the ship finally sank beneath the frigid waters.
 

Paragraph D

What or who was responsible for the magnitude of the catastrophic event? There are numerous explanations, some of which focus on minute minutiae. Because of a last-minute change in the ship's officer line-up, iceberg lookouts Frederick Fleet and Reginald Lee were forced to make do without a pair of binoculars that an officer transferred off the ship at Southampton had left in a cupboard onboard, unbeknownst to any of the ship's crew. Fleet, who survived the sinking, claimed at a subsequent investigation that if he had owned the binoculars, he could have discovered the iceberg in time to avert disaster.

 

Paragraph E

Less than an hour before the Titanic collided with the iceberg, wireless operator Cyril Evans in California, about 20 miles to the north, attempted to reach Titanic operator Jack Phillips to warn him of the approaching pack ice. Phillips responded, "Shut up, shut up, you're jamming my signal." "I'm occupied." Philips was clearing a backlog of personal messages that passengers had requested to be transmitted to family and friends in the United States after the Titanic's wireless system had gone down for several hours earlier that day.
Despite several warnings of ice ahead, Captain Smith kept the ship moving at 22 knots. Although it has been alleged that Smith was under pressure to make headlines by landing early in New York, maritime historians such as Richard Howell have refuted this notion by pointing out that Smith was just adhering to the standard procedure at the time and was not acting irresponsibly.
 

Paragraph F

The Titanic did not have enough lifeboats for everyone on board, which is one of the most compelling explanations for the massive loss of life. Maritime regulations at the time considered that the lifeboat capacity was determined by the size of the ship, not the number of passengers on board. This meant that with space for 1,178 of its 2,222 passengers, the Titanic actually exceeded the Board of Trade's requirement that it carry lifeboats for 1,060 passengers.

 

Paragraph G 

Despite the fact that lifeboats were lowered with less than half full in many situations, and only 712 passengers survived despite a two-and-a-half-hour window of chance, more lifeboats would not have ensured more survivors in the absence of improved training and planning. After the order to launch lifeboats was given, many passengers were puzzled about where to go; a lifeboat drill that had been scheduled for earlier on the same day the Titanic struck the iceberg was cancelled by Captain Smith to allow passengers to attend church.
 

Also Read: IELTS Reading Tips & Tricks

2.

A Disaster of Titanic Proportions Reading Questions and Answers

Discover exciting and informative IELTS reading answers about A Disaster of Titanic Proportions

Questions and Answers 1-6
Complete the table below.

  • Choose NO MORE THAN TWO WORDS from the text for each answer.
  • Write your answers in blank spaces next to 1-6 on your answer sheet.

 

Time  

Person’s

Position

Action

11:39 p.m1  __________ 2  __________ A reported sighting of the iceberg
3 __________   AndrewsShip’s designerReported how long the Titanic could stay afloat
12:15 a.mSmithCaptainOrdered 4 __________ to be released
2:17 a.mBride & Philips5 __________ 

Relayed final  

6 __________ 

 

 

A Disaster of Titanic Proportions Reading Answers with explanations (1 - 6)


 

Type of Question: Table completion
 

You’ll be given a table with missing information in the Table Completion task. Your task is to study the table thoroughly and fill in the blanks. 
 

How to best answer the question:

 

  • Study and analyse the given table
  • Identify what the question is about and note down the keywords
  • Your keyword can be a synonym or a related word
  • Reread the passage and find the corresponding information

 

 

1. Fleet

 

Reference:

 

From paragraph A: ‘ "Iceberg, right ahead!" Fleet exclaimed as he picked up the phone at the helm and waited for Sixth Officer Moody to answer.’

 

Explanation 

According to the passage, lookouts Frederick Fleet and Reginald Lee spotted a dark mass approaching the ship from the front. Fleet informed the ship's Sixth Officer Moody by picking up the phone at the helm and yelling, "Iceberg, right ahead!" This set in motion the events that led to the Titanic sinking.


 

2. Lookout

 

Reference:

 

From paragraph A: ‘Lookouts Frederick Fleet and Reginald Lee on the Titanic's front mast spotted an eerie, black mass approaching into view immediately in front of the ship at 11:39 p.m. on Sunday, April 14, 1912.’
 

Explanation

As per the given passage, lookouts Frederick Fleet and Reginald Lee were on the forward mast of the Titanic as part of their duty as lookouts. At 11:39 p.m. on the evening of Sunday, 14 April 1912, they noticed a black mass coming into view directly in front of the ship, indicating that they were assigned to the lookout post.


 

3. Midnight/12 am

 

Reference:

 

From paragraph B: ‘Thomas Andrews, the ship's designer, conducted a visual survey of the ship's damage at midnight and warned Captain Smith that the ship would sink in less than two hours.’
 

Explanation 

According to the passage, after the Titanic struck the iceberg, the ship's designer, Thomas Andrews, conducted a visual survey of the ship's damage at midnight and informed Captain Smith that the ship would sink in less than two hours.


 

4. Lifeboats

 

Reference:

 

From paragraph B: ‘After Smith had given the order for the lifeboats to be opened and swung out 15 minutes earlier, the lifeboats were being loaded with women and children by 12:30 a.m.’
 

Explanation

According to the given passage, after the ship's designer, Thomas Andrews informed Captain Smith about the ship's sinking, Smith gave the order for the lifeboats to be uncovered and swung out 15 minutes earlier, and by 12:30 a.m., the lifeboats were being loaded with women and children. 


 

5. Wireless Operators

 

Reference:

 

From paragraph C: ‘Harold Bride and Jack Philips sent their final wireless message at 2:17 a.m. after being relieved of their duties as the ship's wireless operators and the ship's band ceased performing.’
 

Explanation

According to the passage, Harold Bride and Jack Philips were the ship's wireless operators who sent their last message at 2:17 a.m. and were later relieved of their duties. The ship's band also stopped playing at the same time.


 

6. Wireless (messages)

 

Reference:

 

From paragraph E: ‘Phillips responded, "Shut up, shut up, you're jamming my signal." "I'm occupied." Philips was clearing a backlog of personal messages that passengers had requested to be transmitted to family and friends in the United States after the Titanic's wireless system had gone down for several hours earlier that day.’
 

Explanation

As mentioned in the paragraph above, the Titanic's wireless system had broken down several hours earlier that day. As a result, Harold Bride and Jack Philips had a backlog of personal messages that passengers had requested to be sent to their family and friends in the USA. 

Questions and Answers 7-10
Do the following statements agree with the information given in Reading Passage 1? In boxes 7-10 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

 

7. The binoculars for the men on watch had been left in a crew locker in Southampton.
 

8. The missing binoculars were the major factor leading to the collision with the iceberg.

 

9. Philips missed notification about the ice from Evans because the Titanic’s wireless system was not functioning at the time.
 

10. Captain Smith knew there was ice in the area.

 

A Disaster of Titanic Proportions Reading Answers with explanations (7 - 10)


 

Type of Question: Identifying Information or True/False/Not Given 
 

In this task, you are given a set of statements. Based on your understanding of the passage, you should identify the nature of the given statement and write the correct answer. 


 

You can assess whether the statement given in the question is:

  • TRUE if the statement agrees with the information
  • FALSE if the statement contradicts the information
  • NOT GIVEN if there is no information on this

 

How to best answer the question

 

  • Read the given question statements carefully and note down the keywords
  • With the help of the keywords, locate them in the passage, which will help you decide whether the given statement is true or false
  • Your answer will not be given if the information is not in the passage.

 

7. False

 

Reference:

 

From paragraph D: ‘Because of a last-minute change in the ship's officer line-up, iceberg lookouts Frederick Fleet and Reginald Lee were forced to make do without a pair of binoculars that an officer transferred off the ship at Southampton had left in a cupboard onboard, unbeknownst to any of the ship's crew.’
 

Explanation

The answer is false because due to a sudden change in the ship's officer line-up, the lookouts on the Titanic, Frederick Fleet and Reginald Lee, had to manage without a pair of binoculars that were left in a cupboard on board. It's a shame that the urgency prevented them from being stored in a crew locker in Southampton.


 

8. Not Given

 

Reference:

 

From paragraph D: What or who was responsible for the magnitude of the catastrophic event? There are numerous explanations, some of which focus on minute minutiae. Because of a last-minute change in the ship's officer line-up, iceberg lookouts Frederick Fleet and Reginald Lee were forced to make do without a pair of binoculars that an officer transferred off the ship at Southampton had left in a cupboard onboard, unbeknownst to any of the ship's crew. Fleet, who survived the sinking, claimed at a subsequent investigation that if he had owned the binoculars, he could have discovered the iceberg to avert disaster.

 

Explanation: According to the passage, there are several speculations regarding the wreck of Titanic. It does not provide any information to claim that the missing binoculars were the major factor leading to the collision with the iceberg. So, the information in the question statement is not in the passage. 


 

9. False

 

Reference:

 

From paragraph E: ‘Less than an hour before the Titanic collided with the iceberg, wireless operator Cyril Evans in California, about 20 miles to the north, attempted to reach Titanic operator Jack Phillips to warn him of the approaching pack ice.’
 

Explanation

As per the reference, the wireless operator Cyril Evans tried to contact Jack Phillips on the Titanic less than an hour before it struck the iceberg. However, Phillips responded, "Shut up, shut up, you're jamming my signal. I'm busy." Therefore, the answer is false.


 

10. True

 

Reference:

 

From paragraph E: ‘Despite several warnings of ice ahead, Captain Smith kept the ship moving at 22 knots.’

 

Explanation

As mentioned in the above statement, Captain Smith was aware of the potential danger of ice in the area. Despite receiving multiple warnings earlier, he maintained the ship's speed of 22 knots. This decision may have contributed to the tragic sinking of the ship. Therefore, the answer is true.

Questions and Answers 11-13
Answer the questions below.

  • Write NO MORE THAN THREE WORDS AND/ OR A NUMBER from the passage for each answer.

 

11. What was the ship's speed despite repeated prior warnings about ice?
 

12. Instead of the lifeboat drill, Captain Smith allowed passengers to attend what?
 

13. How long did it take the Titanic to collide with a piece of submerged ice?

 

A Disaster of Titanic Proportions Reading Answers with explanations (11 - 13)

 

Type of Question: Short Answer Questions

 

In this task, you will be given a set of questions. You are supposed to answer them with short answers. Typically, the answers can be 1-2 sentences long. Read the question instructions carefully to understand the word limit. 

 

How to best answer the questions: 

 

  • Read the questions first to understand what information you need to look for in the passage.
  • Skim the passage and look for keywords. 
  • You may have to look for synonyms or paraphrased sentences to locate the answer. 
  • Verify your answers and finalise them.

 

11. 22 knots

 

Reference:

 

From paragraph E: ‘Despite several warnings of ice ahead, Captain Smith kept the ship moving at 22 knots.’
 

Explanation

As per the above statement, Captain Smith continued to navigate the ship at 22 knots despite the warnings of ice ahead. It's important to prioritise safety and take necessary precautions while navigating potentially hazardous conditions.


 

12. Church

 

Reference:

 

From paragraph F: ‘This meant that with space for 1,178 of its 2,222 passengers, the Titanic actually exceeded the Board of Trade's requirement that it carry lifeboats for 1,060 passengers.’
 

Explanation

According to the paragraph, a lifeboat drill was scheduled for the same day the Titanic hit the iceberg. However, it was cancelled by Captain Smith so that passengers could attend church services. This decision caused serious consequences as passengers were not as prepared as they could have been for the emergency evacuation that followed the collision.


 

13. 37 seconds

 

Reference:

 

From paragraph B: ‘The Titanic struck a piece of submerged ice 37 seconds later, shattering rivets in the ship's hull and filling the first five watertight compartments, despite the attempts of personnel in the bridge and engine room to manoeuvre around the iceberg.’
 

Explanation

As the above paragraph explains, the Titanic struck submerged ice, shattering rivets and filling the first five watertight compartments. The crew's attempts to manoeuvre around the iceberg were unsuccessful.


 

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FAQs

Q. What types of questions are included in the IELTS Reading test?

A. The IELTS Reading test includes various types of questions such as Multiple Choice, Matching, Sentence Completion, Summary Completion, and True/False/Not Given. These questions are designed to test your reading skills, comprehension, and ability to identify specific information, main ideas, and supporting details in a given text.
 

Q. How is the IELTS Reading test scored?

A. The IELTS Reading test is scored on a scale of 0-9 based on the number of correct answers, with no penalty for incorrect answers. The overall band score is determined by averaging the scores of the four sections of the IELTS test. The minimum score requirements vary for different purposes.

Q. What is the minimum score required in the IELTS Reading test?

A. There are no minimum score requirements for the IELTS exam. However, on average, a good score is typically 6.5, although specific institutions may have different requirements. It's important to check with the institution you're interested in for their specific score requirements.

Q. How much time should I spend on each passage in the IELTS Reading test?

A. In the IELTS Reading test, you are given 60 minutes to complete 40 questions based on three passages of increasing difficulty. You should spend about 20 minutes on each passage. This will give you enough time to read the passage carefully, understand its main idea, and answer the questions accurately. 

Q. What are some common mistakes to avoid in the IELTS Reading test?

A. Some common mistakes to avoid in the IELTS Reading test are not reading the instructions carefully, spending too much time on one question, making spelling mistakes, and mismanaging time.

Q. How can I improve my reading speed for the IELTS Reading test?

A. Try a few techniques such as skimming, scanning and close reading to improve your reading speed for the IELTS Reading test. Skimming, scanning, and close reading involves reading the text carefully to understand the details. You can also practice reading different types of texts, such as magazines, academic articles and news articles, to expose yourself to different writing styles and vocabulary.

Q. What is the average score for the IELTS Reading test?

Generally, a score of 6 or 6.5 is considered good enough to meet the requirements of most universities and colleges. The score for the IELTS Reading test depends on the test takers' proficiency level. The IELTS Reading test is scored on a scale of 0 to 9, with 0 being the lowest and 9 being the highest.

Q. What are some good books for IELTS Reading test preparation?

There are various books available in the market for IELTS Reading test preparation. Some of the popular ones are:

1. "Cambridge IELTS" series by Cambridge University Press
2. "Barron's IELTS Superpack" by Lin Lougheed
3. "Official IELTS Practice Materials" by Cambridge ESOL
4. "Target Band 7" by Simone Braverman
5. "IELTS Advantage: Reading Skills" by Jeremy Lindeck and Jon Wright

These books provide a comprehensive understanding of the IELTS Reading test and include practice exercises, sample tests, and strategies to improve your reading skills. 

Q. Where can I get resources for IELTS Reading test preparation?

A. There are many resources available for IELTS Reading test preparation. You can start by checking out the official website of the International English Language Testing System (IELTS). They offer a variety of free resources, including practice tests and sample questions. There are many books and online courses available that can help you prepare for the test. 
 

Q. How many questions are there in the IELTS Reading test?

The IELTS Reading test consists of 40 questions, making it a crucial aspect of the exam. To succeed, it is essential to be familiar with the number of questions and the types of questions that will be asked in the test. Knowing what to expect will enable you to prepare accordingly and maximise your chances of success.

Q. How can I answer multiple choice questions for the IELTS Reading test?

To answer multiple choice questions in the IELTS Reading test, read the questions and underline any keywords. Then, locate the relevant section in the passage and read it carefully for clues. Eliminate incorrect options and make an educated guess if you're unsure. Manage your time effectively, and don't spend too much time on any one question.