Question 17 - High School English II: Writing Practice Test for the STAAR test

Which word best replaces the word hit in sentence 14?

Ivan was assigned to write an informative essay about a natural phenomenon. He chose to write about tsunamis. Read Ivan’s paper and think about the revisions he needs to make. Then answer the questions about his text.



(1) Living or vacationing by the beach can be relaxing and rejuvenating. (2) The fresh ocean air, the sound of the waves crashing onto the beach, the generally sunny and warm weather all make beach communities a nice place to be. (3) But sometimes there is an unforeseen danger in living near the ocean: tsunamis.

(4) A tsunami is a large wave or series of waves caused by earthquakes, underwater volcanic eruption, or other major disturbance to the ocean. (5) The disruption displaces the water above it and waves form. (6) These waves increase in strength and intensity as they near land, building higher as the ocean depth grows shallower. (7) Tsunami waves can reach heights of over 100 feet and cause catastrophic flooding 1000 feet or more inland. (8) They can travel as fast as a jet airliner and cross the Pacific Ocean in less than a day.

(9) Most tsunamis occur in the Pacific Ocean’s “Ring of Fire” region, a seismically active place where several tectonic plate boundaries converge. (10) In fact, the name “tsunami” is a Japanese term meaning “harbor wave”. (11) Japan has a long history of tsunamis as it is located in an active portion of the Ring of Fire.

(12) In 2004, a tsunami occurred in the Indian Ocean after a 9.0 earthquake rocked the region. (13) Its effects were felt in countries from Thailand to the African continent, killing hundreds of thousands trapped in its path. (14) Without warning, a huge wall of water hit local beachside communities, drowning people and animals, destroying buildings and roads, and leaving behind a terrible path of destruction from which people are still trying to recover.

(15) It was as a result of this 2004 tsunami that the Pacific Tsunami Warning System was developed. (16) The Pacific Tsunami Warning System was a coalition of 26 nations that have joined together to monitor seismic activity and water levels in the Pacific Ocean. (17) The Pacific Tsunami Warning System works to identify tsunamis at sea and determine their level of threat to populated areas. (18) The Pacific Tsunami Warning System is headquartered in Hawaii. (19) Tsunamis continue to be a deadly threat to coastal communities.

(20) Even with careful monitoring, tsunamis can be deadly. (21) An earthquake and its subsequent tsunami killed several hundred people in Indonesia recently. (22) Tsunamis are dangerous and even with early warning, it does not make these communities safe.

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