Lightning struck a 50-foot vertical pole, causing a portion of the pole to break. The top of the pole came to rest 10 feet from the base of the pole. How high is the portion of the pole that remains standing?
A) 18 ft
B) 24 ft
C) 26 ft
D) 36 ft
E) 40 ft

This is not a very well worded question. I’m assuming that we’re meant to assume that the pole broke but did not completely separate, and that therefore this is just a right triangles problem. Here’s the setup:

lightning pole right triangle

You can now solve for x, the height of the pole, using the Pythagorean Theorem.

10^2 + x^2=(50-x)^2

100 + x^2=2500-100x+x^2




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