Mon, Dec 25, 2017 - Page 3 News List

Taiwan News Quick Take

Staff writer, with CNA

EDUCATION

TOEIC aborted mid-test

A nationwide Test of English for International Communications (TOEIC) session was yesterday canceled because the voice recordings did not match the content printed in the test booklets, affecting about 24,000 test-takers. The test started with a listening comprehension test, according to the local organizer of the test. However, when the first recorded question was played, participants reported that the question did not match the options on the answer sheet, the organizer said, adding that it decided to cancel the test and send all participants home. Compensatory measures would be published on the TOEIC Taiwan Web site at 10am today, it said. The recording was sent from the US and the error was the first of its kind since the test was launched in Taiwan, the organizer said.

DRUG PREVENTION

Taipei to focus on campuses

Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je (柯文哲) yesterday said his administration would make combating drug use among junior-high school students its top priority next year. Speaking at an anti-drug fair in the city, Ko said the use of illegal drugs is increasing among young students in Taipei. Statistics show that the average age at which residents first use narcotics is below 15 and the youngest drug users are only 12 years old, Ko said, adding that many students try their first illegal drugs between eighth grade and 10th grade. “We have to solve the problem at its root. The drug problem cannot be solved by the police only,” he said, adding that he would focus his anti-drug campaign on campuses and pay extra attention to junior-high schools. According to Ministry of the Interior data, most drug use suspects in 1997 were in their mid-20s, but since 2000, drug use has been most prevalent among people in their early 20s. People aged 18 to 23 now have the highest prevalence of drug use, the ministry said. Last year, the number of drug users aged 12 to 17 was three times as high as in 1997, the data showed.

TOURISM

Alishan rail marks 105 years

The Alishan Forest Railway yesterday celebrated its 105th birthday with activities, performances and a cake in the shape of a steam locomotive at a ceremony at the railway’s Beimen Railway Station. The event, which was organized by the Chiayi Forest District Office, featured stories about the railway told by Jhuci Senior High School’s Alishan Young Ambassadors team and songs by students from the county’s Shihzih Elementary School. Council of Agriculture Minister Lin Tsung-hsien (林聰賢) said that the Alishan Forest Railway and its forestry culture are national treasures in terms of culture, sightseeing and nature conservation.

FREEWAYS

Emergency phones removed

The National Freeway Bureau on Friday announced it is to remove emergency telephone booths along portions of Freeway No. 6 and all of Freeway No. 10 from Jan. 1. The bureau cited the phones’ low usage rates and the omnipresence of cellphones as reasons to remove the booths, eliminating their maintenance costs. The booths in the tunnels of freeway No. 6 will remain, as cellphone reception there is poor, the bureau said in a statement. The National Freeway Bureau earlier this year did away with the telephone booths along freeways No. 2, 4 and 8, as only one call was made from the phones since July 1, 2014. The lack of emergency phones along the three freeways has not had any effect on people’s ability to report emergency situations, the bureau said, adding that they simply used their mobile phones.

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