Definition of accelerant in English:



  • A substance used to aid the spread of fire.

    ‘stolen accelerants could be used as fire bombs’
    • ‘During the siege he set off a fire extinguisher and told the police he had accelerants.’
    • ‘We don't know if it's arson or if the fire was caused by an electrical fault in the car but we will know more later today when the sniffer dogs establish if any accelerants were used.’
    • ‘A sniffer dog detected numerous accelerants at the scene, though police are uncertain whether they were used to start the fire, or just recreational material left by squatters.’
    • ‘For years, arson investigators looked for telltale signs of chipped concrete based on the assumption that fire accelerants like gasoline cause such fragmentation.’
    • ‘But officers were there until 1.30 am to establish the cause of the blaze with help from a fire investigation dog, specially trained to sniff out accelerants.’
    • ‘They confirmed that a man entered the second-hand shop at around 1pm and sprayed an accelerant, believed to be petrol, around before igniting it.’
    • ‘The black labrador will use his nose to find whether any accelerants were used to start the fire at the Imperial Foods building in Cliffe Road, Undercliffe, in the early hours of Tuesday.’
    • ‘Teenagers are often injured from illicit activities involving accelerants, such as petrol, or electrocution.’
    • ‘One witness claimed to have seen Long pouring a clear liquid into a burning rubbish bin at the top of the stairs, but a US expert told the trial that the fire started on the ground floor and that no accelerants were used.’
    • ‘Detectives believe accelerants - possibly petrol - were either sprayed at the door or poured through the letterbox before being ignited in what they called a ‘sinister incident’.’
    • ‘Sergeant Bob Graham, a police forensic officer, testified he had not been able to determine the cause of the fire but that his tests showed no accelerants were used to start the blaze.’
    • ‘A spokesman for Greater Manchester Police said: ‘We believe that this fire was deliberately started with the use of accelerants.’’
    • ‘We know there was a break-in at the school and that a fire started somehow, but accelerants were not used.’
    • ‘The three-year-old labrador, whose main duty is to sniff out fire accelerants like petrol or paraffin where arson is suspected, has impressed his bosses so much on his nine-month trial that he will become a full-time fixture.’
    • ‘Note that the patient has used liberal amounts of hair gel, hair spray, and perfume, all of which act as fuel and accelerants for a fire.’
    • ‘He believed the fire had been developing for at least 15 minutes before the fire brigade arrived as no accelerants such as petrol appeared to have been used.’
    • ‘Detroit Fire Commissioner Charles Wilson said his investigation, conducted with search dogs, found no accelerants that would link the fire to arson.’
    • ‘It found two spots where accelerants could have been used and police took away samples for analysis.’
    • ‘He added that a brick had been thrown through the window and a fire accelerant was thrown in on boxes containing paper documents.’
    • ‘The garda team are looking for accelerants that may have led to the fire.’


  • Accelerating or causing acceleration.

    ‘accelerant factors for carcinoma’
    • ‘Catherine took up Mandarin, one of the most difficult languages to learn, in the accelerant class at Tauranga Intermediate.’
    • ‘And so there's an accelerant effect for information flowing through the network.’