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# Motorists in a certain country frequently complain that traffic

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Motorists in a certain country frequently complain that traffic  [#permalink]

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Updated on: 13 Oct 2018, 07:34
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Difficulty:

15% (low)

Question Stats:

78% (01:43) correct 22% (02:10) wrong based on 1208 sessions

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Motorists in a certain country frequently complain that traffic congestion is much worse now than it was 20 years ago. No real measure of how much traffic congestion there was 20 years ago exists, but the motorists' complaints are almost certainly unwarranted. The country's highway capacity has tripled in the last twenty years, thanks to a vigorous highway construction program, whereas the number of automobiles registered in the country has increased by only 75 percent.

Which of the following, if true, most seriously weakens the argument?

(A) Most automobile travel is local, and the networks of roads and streets in the country's settled areas have changed little over the last 20 years.

(B) Gasoline prices are high, and miles traveled per car per year have not changed much over the last 20 years.

(C) The country's urban centers have well-developed public transit systems that carry most of the people who commute into those centers.

(D) The average age of automobiles registered in the country is lower now than it was 20 years ago.

Traffic Congestion

Step 1: Identify the Question

The word weakens indicates that this is a Weaken the Argument question.

Step 2: Deconstruct the Argument

M: More cong than 20ya

Ó Unwarranted complaints

Highway Cap = 3X

Regis cars = +75%

Note: ya is an abbreviation for years ago.

Step 3: Pause and State the Goal

On Weaken questions, the correct answer should make the conclusion less likely to be valid. The argument states that highway capacity has increased faster than the number of registered cars over the relevant time period. What other factors could be contributing to traffic congestion?

Step 4: Work from Wrong to Right

(A) CORRECT. Although the argument states that highway capacity has increased substantially, it does not mention local roads. If the local roads have remained the same while the number of cars has increased by 75%, then traffic congestion may be worse on these roads. Furthermore, this answer establishes that local roads are where most cars travel.

(B) This answer would strengthen the argument because it excludes a potential cause of increased traffic congestion: an increase in miles driven per car.

(C) The fact that some people use public transit does not directly address whether traffic congestion has increased over the last 20 years.

(D) The age of cars does not directly influence traffic congestion.

(E) This answer explains why people may be informed about traffic congestions even if they are not actually driving in the congestion; it does not address whether traffic congestion has changed in the past 20 years.

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Originally posted by Vercules on 28 Mar 2013, 04:15.
Last edited by hazelnut on 13 Oct 2018, 07:34, edited 2 times in total.
Edited the question.
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Re: Motorists in a certain country frequently complain that traffic  [#permalink]

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10 Sep 2013, 12:09
8
I was finally able to make up the correct answer on this one, though, I took just over 2 minutes.

This is how I understand it -

The motorists are currently complaining that there is good amount of congestion, but the highway construction program point puts emphasis that it will be able to handle 3 times the traffic and at the same time, the increase in the automobiles is 75% from the last 20 years. So, the highway should be very easily able to handle the 75% increase in the automobile numbers.

So, in order to find a weak link, we have to find a reason pertaining to the congestion point that is raised by the Motorists. In order words, are they referring to the congestion in the city or the highways ? What kind of travel the motorists generally do ?

The highway construction program would surely help the vehicles using the highways more frequently but would not be of much use to the commuters who only travel locally and the conclusion does not take this point into account. So, A becomes the weak link.

The other answer choices just do not seem relevant.

Hope this helps !!
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Re: Motorists in a certain country frequently complain that traffic  [#permalink]

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07 Mar 2016, 12:15
Vercules wrote:
Motorists in a certain country frequently complain that traffic congestion is much worse now than it was 20 years ago. No real measure of how much traffic congestion there was 20 years ago exists, but the motorists' complaints are almost certainly unwarranted. The country's highway capacity has tripled in the last twenty years, thanks to a vigorous highway construction program, whereas the number of automobiles registered in the country has increased by only 75 percent.

Which of the following, if true, most seriously weakens the argument?

A) Most automobile travel is local, and the networks of roads and streets in the country's settled areas have changed little over the last 20 years.
B) Gasoline prices are high, and miles traveled per car per year have not changed much over the last 20 years.
C) The country's urban centers have well-developed public transit systems that carry most of the people who commute into those centers.
D) The average age of automobiles registered in the country is lower now than it was 20 years ago.

A suggests that local roads have changed LITTLE over time but the number of cars has increased by 75%--correct

B: gasoline prices are high but does not show how its effecting the traffic congestion--out of scope

C, D, E are out of scope.
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Re: Motorists in a certain country frequently complain that traffic  [#permalink]

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03 Jun 2016, 03:15
1
2
Premise 1:- Motorists in a certain country frequently complain that traffic congestion is much worse now than it was 20 years ago.
Counter Premise for above:- No real measure of how much traffic congestion there was 20 years ago exists, but the ..
Conclusion :- motorists' complaints are almost certainly unwarranted.
Additional Premise:- The country's highway capacity has tripled in the last twenty years, thanks to a vigorous highway construction program, whereas the number of automobiles registered in the country has increased by only 75 percent.

We are asked to use one of the 5 true statements to weaken the argument above. before that notice the highlighted portion. The conclusion that motorist's claims are unwarranted rests on the underlined portion of the additional premise that highways have tripled but the proportion of automobiles increase is lesser when compared. We must try to choose an answer that would undermine this premise on which the conclusion rests.

A) Most automobile travel is local, and the networks of roads and streets in the country's settled areas have changed little over the last 20 years. - Perfect! This clearly means, highways may have increased but that does not change the local transportation quality and hence motorist claims may be true and argument becomes weakened.
B) Gasoline prices are high, and miles traveled per car per year have not changed much over the last 20 years. - Irrelevant to the argument.
C) The country's urban centers have well-developed public transit systems that carry most of the people who commute into those centers - This is does not cover suburban areas and argument does not limit the scope to only urban traffic hence wrong.
D) The average age of automobiles registered in the country is lower now than it was 20 years ago. - Out of scope.
E) Radio stations have long been broadcasting regular traffic reports that inform motorists about traffic congestion. - This will strengthen the argument and not weaken it hence eliminate this choice.
.
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Re: Motorists in a certain country frequently complain that traffic  [#permalink]

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03 Sep 2016, 00:59
Can anyone please write the premises and conclusion of this question? I did it twice and did it wrong in both attempts. I know the answer now but it's not satisfying me without knowing premises and conclusion
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Re: Motorists in a certain country frequently complain that traffic  [#permalink]

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03 Sep 2016, 07:23
1
preranachaulagain wrote:
Can anyone please write the premises and conclusion of this question? I did it twice and did it wrong in both attempts. I know the answer now but it's not satisfying me without knowing premises and conclusion

Premise: The country’s highway capacity has tripled in the last twenty years, thanks to a vigorous highway construction program, whereas the number of automobiles registered in the country has increased by only 75 percent.

Conclusion: The motorists’ complaints (that traffic congestion is much worse now than it was 20 years ago) are almost certainly unwarranted.

Option A states a reason that the motorists' complain could be valid.
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Motorists in a certain country frequently complain that traffic  [#permalink]

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11 Jun 2019, 02:43
An easy one I guess

(A) Most automobile travel is local, and the networks of roads and streets in the country's settled areas have changed little over the last 20 years. So the motorists are actually traveling within the city and not on the highways. Hence, the argument stands weakened as the expansion of highway is doing no good to these motorists traveling within the city limits. This looks good and in line with our questions.

(B) Gasoline prices are high, and miles traveled per car per year have not changed much over the last 20 years.
Irrelevant. Does not in any way weaken the argument

(C) The country's urban centers have well-developed public transit systems that carry most of the people who commute into those centers.

Does not weaken. Irrelevant piece of information

(D) The average age of automobiles registered in the country is lower now than it was 20 years ago.

What has the average age got to do with traffic? Irrelevant

even if they inform about congestion, they do not help reduce it in any way..Irrelevant

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Motorists in a certain country frequently complain that traffic  [#permalink]

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26 Jun 2019, 18:34
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The conclusion is :- The motorists' complaints that " traffic congestion is much worse now than it was 20 years ago " are almost certainly unwarranted.
If we weaken it , it becomes :- The complaints are warranted and the traffic congestion is much worse now than it was 20 years ago.

Option A says :- "Most automobile travel is local, and the networks of roads and streets in the country's settled areas have changed little over the last 20 years."
Since the areas where motorists travel dint change much although the country's highway capacity has tripled in the last twenty years, thanks to a vigorous highway construction program,
motorists' complaints are warranted and the traffic congestion is much worse now than it was 20 years ago.

Motorists in a certain country frequently complain that traffic   [#permalink] 26 Jun 2019, 18:34
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