Smoke alarms in home & Sydney opera house tours – IELTS General Reading Passage

You should spend about 20 minutes on Questions 1-14, which are based on Reading Passages below.

Write answers to questions in boxes 1-14 on your answer sheet.

GT Reading Sample – “Smoke alarms in the home” & “Sydney Opera House Tours”

Read the text below and answer Questions 1-7.

Smoke alarms in the home

Smoke alarms are now a standard feature in Australian homes and are required by the National Building Code in any recently built properties. They are installed to detect the presence of smoke and emit a clear sound to alert you in the event of fire to give you time to escape.

There are two principal types of smoke alarms. Ionization alarms are the cheapest and most readily available smoke alarms. They are also very sensitive to ‘flaming fires’ – fires that burn fiercely – and will detect them before the smoke gets too thick. However, photoelectric alarms are more effective at detecting slow-burning fires. They are less likely to go off accidentally and so are best for homes with one floor. For the best protection, you should install one of each.

Most battery-powered smoke alarms can be installed by the home owner and do not require professional installation. For the installation of hard-wired smoke alarms, powered from the mains electricity supply, however, you will need the services of a licensed professional. Smoke alarms are usually most effective when located on the ceiling, near or in the middle of the room or hall.

Photoelectric smoke alarms in any quantity may be disposed of in domestic waste. If you have fewer than ten ionization alarms to get rid of, you may put them in your domestic waste. If you have more than ten to dispose of, you should contact your local council.

Your battery-powered smoke alarm will produce a short beep every 60 second to alert you when the battery is running out and needs replacing. Nevertheless, it should be tested every month to ensure that the battery and the alarm sounder are working. Note that the sensitivity in all smoke alarms will reduce over time.

Questions 1-7

Do the following statements agree with the information given in Reading Passage?

In boxes 1-7 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

1.  All new houses in Australia must have smoke alarms.
2.  Photoelectric smoke alarms cost less than ionization smoke alarms.
3.  It takes a short time to fit most smoke alarms.
4.  Any hard-wired smoke alarm must be fitted by a specialist technician.
5.  You should get in touch with your local council before placing any ionisation smoke alarms in household rubbish.
6.  Smoke alarms give a warning sound to indicate that battery power is low.
7.  Old smoke alarms need to be checked more than once a month.

Read the text below and answer Questions 8-14.

Sydney Opera House Tours

We offer three different tours of this iconic building.

A  The Essential Tour brings to life the story behind the design and construction of one of the world’s most famous landmarks. Using interactive audio-visual technology, your guide will take you on a memorable journey inside the youngest building ever to be World Heritage listed.

 Afterwards, why not stay around and eat at the Studio Café, with its modern Australian menu? Not only can you enjoy the best views in Sydney, you can claim a 20% reduction on the total cost of your meal. (Don’t forget to show your ticket in order to claim your discount.)

C  Languages: English, French, German
    Takes place: Daily between 9 am and 5 pm
    Prices: Adults $35 / Online $29.75
    Concessions: Australian seniors and pensioners; students and children of 16 and under $24.50.
    Prior bookings are not essential.

D  The Backstage Tour gives you backstage access to the Sydney Opera House. It is a unique opportunity to experience the real-life dramas behind the stage! You might even get to stand on the concert hall stage, take up a conductor’s baton in the orchestra pit and imagine you are leading the performance. You will also get to see inside the stars’ dressing rooms. The tour concludes with a complimentary breakfast in the Green Room, the private dining area of performers past and present.

E  Takes place: Daily at 7 am
     Prices: $155. No concessions.
     To purchase: Bookings are essential.
                         Limited to 8 people per tour.
     Online sales expire at 4.30 pm two days prior.
     The tour includes up to 300 steps. Flat, rubber-soled shoes must be worn. For safety reasons, children of 12 years old and under are not permitted.

F  Opera High Tea consists of a tour where you will walk in the footsteps of world-class singers, dancers and musicians, followed by fine food and music in the spectacular surroundings of the Bennelong Dining Room. What could be better than a treat of delicious light snacks and soft drinks followed by a live recital by a leading Australian singer? An unforgettable treat for young and old!

G  Takes place: Every second Wednesday, 2 pm
     Duration: 1.5 hours
     Prices: $145 per person

     Book online or visit the Guided Tours Desk.

Questions 8-14

The text has seven sections A-G. Which section mentions the following?
Write the correct letter, A-G, in boxes 8-14 on your answer sheet.
NB You may use any letter more than once.

 8.  discounts available to younger visitors.
 9.  the need for suitable footwear.
10.  the opportunity to pretend you are taking part in a concert.
11.  a restriction on the number of participants.
12.  a reduction that applies to purchases using the internet.
13.  the need to book your ticket in advance.
14.  the length of one of the tours.

8. C
9. E
10. D
11. E
12. C
13. E
14. G