Definition of all hell breaks (or is let) loose in English:

all hell breaks (or is let) loose

phrase

informal
  • Suddenly there is pandemonium.

    ‘the police arrived one night and all hell broke loose’
    • ‘Suddenly, all hell broke loose and a couple of compartments were set on fire.’
    • ‘All hell would have broken loose if a fraction of these acts had been performed by the other side.’
    • ‘Suddenly all hell broke loose and everybody dived for cover.… It was only later that the man's story emerged.’
    • ‘But when I got to Los Angeles at the age of 22, all hell broke loose.’
    • ‘Over the next few weeks, all hell broke loose on campus.’
    • ‘A raucous screech flooded her head and suddenly all hell broke loose.’
    • ‘But that's what he got - and all hell broke loose.’
    • ‘Suddenly all hell broke loose as one of the suspects struggled free, grabbed a knife and attacked an unarmed officer.’
    • ‘But as soon as I say I'm only interested in Asians, suddenly all hell breaks loose!’
    • ‘Suddenly, all hell broke loose; there was gunfire and explosions everywhere.’
    • ‘When the final whistle blew all hell broke loose.’
    • ‘They agreed to meet and had nominated two of four delegates when Beverley arrived to ask them if they had their delegation organised and all hell broke loose.’
    • ‘We'd simply been reading a map when all hell broke loose, and now there were more than a dozen men milling around and telling us they were going to take Andrew's bike and we must go with them to the police station.’
    • ‘Chances are, you might be a little shaken up if you happened to be down at Vinyl Lounge on Saturday night, when all hell broke loose outside the club.’
    • ‘They give him a learning support assistant but as soon as things start to improve they withdraw it and all hell is let loose.’
    • ‘It always starts with an investigative article in either The Washington Post or The New York Times, and all hell is let loose.’
    • ‘And then all hell broke loose on the night of March 10 that year.’
    • ‘‘All of a sudden, all hell broke loose,’ he told magistrates.’
    • ‘And then all hell broke loose when he walked out.’
    • ‘‘We were there until 11 pm and then all hell broke loose,’ said the prison officer.’