In 1955, legislation in a certain country gave the government increased control over industrial workplace safety cond...

Shayne on September 13, 2014

A not C?

I get why A could be the answer, because it describes an alternate cause for risk reduction in work environment, but doesn't C explain it better? I understand that the passage says that " the likelyhood of work injury....greatly reduced...... Legislation in 1955" but answer choice C says the actual occurrences have risen since 1955. Sounds to me like C weakens more than A. Please help por favor.

1 Reply

Melody on September 19, 2014

The conclusion in the argument is: the legislation has increased overall worker safety within high-risk industries.

Why? In 1955, legislation in a certain country gave the government increased control over the industrial workplace safety conditions. We are also told that among the high-risk industries in that country, the likelihood that a worker will suffer a serious injury has decreased since 1955.

Answer choice (A) states: "Because of technological innovation, most workplaces in the high-risk industries do not require as much unprotected interaction between workers and heavy machinery as they did in 1955."

We are confronted with a cause and effect argument in the passage. We see that since X occurred, the likelihood of Y has decreased. From this we conclude that X caused Y to decrease. Answer choice (A) tells us that Z actually caused Y to decrease.

It introduces an alternate possibility. It was, in fact, not the legislation that decreased serious work injuries amongst high-risk industries, but the introduction of technological innovation because the new technology made these industries no longer dependent on as much unprotected interaction between workers and heavy machinery as they did in 1955.

Answer choice (C) states: "The annual number of WORK-RELATED injuries has increased since the legislation took effect."

We know from the stimulus that since 1955, the likelihood that a worker in the HIGH-RISK INDUSTRIES will suffer a serious injury has decreased. This still leaves open the possibility that the likelihood that a worker in a low-risk industry will suffer a serious injury has increased. It could be true that work-related injuries in high-risk industries have decreased, while those in low-risk industries have increased--meaning that the annual number of work-related injuries has increased since the legislation took effect; this situation does not weaken the conclusion that the legislation has increased overall worker safety within high-risk industries.

Thus, because answer choice (C) uses the general term of "work-related injuries" as opposed to work-related injuries in "high-risk industries," it does not affect our conclusion that the legislation has increased overall worker safety within HIGH-RISH INDUSTRIES.

Hope that clears things up! Please let us know if you have any other questions.