センター本試験 １９９４年度 第６問 問題
Douglas Corrigan peered out of the window of his airplane. Below, a thick blanket of fog hid the ground from view. Earlier that morning on July 17, 1938, Corrigan had taken off from New York. He hoped to fly nonstop to the West Coast.
Flight across the continent was still unusual, and in a plane like Corrigan’s, it was a daring venture. Corrigan had bought the plane secondhand. It had been a four-seater built to fly short distances, but he had replaced three of the seats with extra fuel tanks and changed the original engine for one with more horsepower.Corrigan had worked diligently on every inch of the plane he called Sunshine
Ever since he had been a boy hanging around the Los Angeles airfields doing odd jobs, he had loved flying. Corrigan had no money and very little formal education. His father had abandoned the family, and a few years later his mother died. By working hard and doing without many things, including breakfast and sometimes lunch, he saved enough money to take flying lessons at the age of eighteen.
Corrigan’s dream was to fly across the Atlantic, as his hero, Charles Lindbergh, had done. But when Corrigan applied for a license to fly to Europe, the inspectors took one look at the condition of the plane and refused to issue him one. However, Corrigan did talk them into giving him a license to fly nonstop from Los Angeles to New York and, if things went well, to try the return trip from New York back to the West Coast.
Things went well. In spite of rough weather, Corrigan made the trip east in twenty-seven hours. He was confident that both he and Sunshine could cross the continent a second time.
Spectators gathered as Corrigan climbed into the plane. Few supplies were aboard. Except for a box of cookies and some candy bars, he wasn’t taking much with him, not even a parachute. Sunshine was already carrying a heavy load of fuel, so he didn’t want to add any more weight.
As dawn was breaking, the overweight plane rose with difficulty into the sky. Within a few minutes, Corrigan and his plane were swallowed by the fog. He soon noticed that one of his compasses didn’t work. But he wasn’t worried. A second compass on the floor of the plane was set for a westerly course. Corrigan swung the plane around to match the compass setting, and climbed above the fog. Ten hours later he was still flying above the fog.
As darkness closed around the plane, Corrigan’s feet began to feel wet and chilled. He turned on his flashlight. The floor of the cabin was covered with gasoline that had leaked from the main tank. With a screwdriver, Corrigan poked a hole through the cabin floor so that the gasoline could safely drain into the open air. He wasn’t too worried about the loss of fuel. After all, he thought, he could always land if he ran out of gasoline.
Hour after hour, Corrigan flew on through the night, following his compass needle. His muscles ached from sitting too long in one position. His gasoline-soaked feet were numb.
When daylight came, Corrigan was surprised to see water below him. He checked his compass and realized that in the poor light he had matched his course to the wrong end of the compass needle. Instead of flying west, toward California, he had flown east, out over the Atlantic Ocean.
He had no idea how far from land he was. He had no radio, no parachute, and he was running low on fuel. There was only one thing he could do: keep flying and hope he reached land before running out of gas.
Twenty-eight hours after takeoff, he spotted land. At a large airfield, Corrigan brought Sunshine safely back to Earth. He was approached by an army officer.
“Hi,” Corrigan said. “I got turned around in the fog. I guess I flew the wrong way.” He soon found out he had landed near Dublin, Ireland. And it wasn’t long before the whole world knew about “Wrong Way” Corrigan, the man who flew backward into his dream.
問１ What kind of plane was the Sunshine?
① A four-seater which could fly only short distances.
② A small, used plane changed to seat one person.
③ A three-seater with extra fuel tanks.
④ One with an extra engine for more horsepower.
問２ What did Corrigan get permission to do?
① To fly across the continent and back.
② To fly from the U.S. to Europe.
③ To fly only one way from New York to Los Angeles.
④ To fly only short distances.
問３ What was the reason that the Sunshine had difficulty taking off?
① Corrigan found that one of his compasses was broken.
② Many supplies were necessary for such a long trip.
③ The fog made it difficult for Corrigan to see the controls.
④ There was a large quantity of fuel on board.
問４ Why wasn’t Corrigan too worried about losing fuel?
① He had carried plenty of fuel with him.
② He managed to drain the gasoline into the sky.
③ He thought he could land at any time.
④ He was more concerned about the numbness in his feet.
問５ When daylight came, what did Corrigan discover?
① Both of his compasses were broken.
② He had forgotten his parachute and was running low on fuel.
③ He had used the compass incorrectly.
④ He was already near his destination.
問６ Why was the hero of the story called “Wrong Way” Corrigan?
① He failed to make his dream come true.
② He flew back to Los Angeles.
③ He fulfilled his dream in an unexpected way.
④ He landed in Dublin instead of New York.
① Corrigan started his flight back to California on July 17, 1938.
② In the 1930s flights across the continent were fairly common.
③ Corrigan hired some mechanics to repair his plane for his needs.
④ Corrigan worked at the Los Angeles airfields as a pilot.
⑤ Corrigan could afford flight lessons despite receiving only a small amount of money from his father.
⑥ Spectators were worried whether Corrigan could fly to New York in such an overweight plane.
⑦ Corrigan was confident that he could continue flying even though one of his compasses was not working.
⑧ The sea Corrigan saw below him after flying through the night was the Atlantic Ocean.
⑨ No spectators had gathered to greet Corrigan as he landed after crossing the ocean.
⓪ Corrigan decided to change direction since he was nearly out of gasoline.
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