PT20 Q26 LR

lothsome
Posts: 15
Joined: Wed Jul 20, 2011 11:15 am

PT20 Q26 LR

Postby lothsome » Wed Aug 10, 2011 2:08 pm

This is the "smoking in bed has declined, deaths haven't" question at the end of the section.

*Spoiler warning*

The correct answer was "B) Home fires caused by smoking in bed often break out after the home's occupants have fallen asleep."

I've sat here thinking about this, and it's annoying me. I don't see how this doesn't contribute to the explanation. My thinking is that if you fall asleep while smoking in bed, and then your sheets catch fire and you burn to death, or suffocate, or wake up too late to escape, it does indeed offer many explanations of why deaths remain high despite a decrease in smoking.

To me, answer A seemed irrelevant, since damages tell us nothing about fatalities. Thus A seemed like the correct answer to me.

C very straightforwardly helps to explain the paradox, as do D and E. So... could someone fill me in on what I'm missing?

pft
Posts: 13
Joined: Tue Jul 05, 2011 7:56 pm

Re: PT20 Q26 LR

Postby pft » Wed Aug 10, 2011 4:19 pm

I don't understand your reasoning for B.

Without further detail, it follows that less smoking --> less fires.

How does B explain having the same number of deaths with less fires?

Manhattan LSAT Noah
Posts: 746
Joined: Tue Oct 12, 2010 8:43 am

Re: PT20 Q26 LR

Postby Manhattan LSAT Noah » Wed Aug 10, 2011 4:20 pm

I think you might have lost sight of the discrepancy you need to resolve. (B) explains why smoking causes fires, but not why the number of deaths has remained the same.

Another example of what (B) is doing is this: smoking fires cause death quickly.

So? Why has the number of deaths stayed constant?

lothsome
Posts: 15
Joined: Wed Jul 20, 2011 11:15 am

Re: PT20 Q26 LR

Postby lothsome » Wed Aug 10, 2011 4:52 pm

pft wrote:I don't understand your reasoning for B.

Without further detail, it follows that less smoking --> less fires.

How does B explain having the same number of deaths with less fires?


The Question Stem is "Each one of the following statements, if true over the last two decades, helps to resolve the apparent discrepancy above EXCEPT:"

The stimulus says that smoking in bed has long been the main cause of house fires, however there's been a significant decline in the number of smoking of cigarettes over the past 2 decades, but also no corresponding decline in the number of people killed due to home fires.

B could explain the number of deaths, but if it were true over the past decade, then we might reasonably expect the number of deaths due to people falling asleep while smoking (and that causing a fire to start that results in a fatality) to remain constant or fall slightly (given the decline in smoking). Thus B is missing a crucial clause that C gives us, and fails to explain the constancy, merely explaining why there may be a fire and it may cause a death. If I'd paid attention to the "over the past two decades" part of the question, I'd probably have noticed that. Instead, I added the assumption in C) to it for... some reason.

Also, thinking about why B is wrong led to the answer for why A does explain the discrepancy. A tells me that house fires caused by smoking are relatively minor affairs, in general, and so one would not expect many deaths to result from them.

Heh, I feel incredibly silly now that I've reviewed the question in light of the comments. A major error I made was to assume that fires that result from smoking cause deaths, rather than thinking that maybe they do or maybe they don't cause deaths.

Thanks all!




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