Main definitions of crash in US English:

: crash1crash2



  • 1no object (of a vehicle) collide violently with an obstacle or another vehicle.

    ‘the stolen car she was riding in crashed into a tree’
    • ‘It didn't blow up, but it stopped almost instantly, and two other vehicles crashed into the back of it.’
    • ‘Abraham injured his left knee and ankle when his motorcycle crashed into two men riding a bicycle.’
    • ‘A bus crashed into a moving train at around 1 pm, killing six people on the spot and injuring nine others.’
    • ‘Police, firefighters and paramedics who were sent to the scene were amazed that no-one was seriously hurt when a van crashed into one of the fuel pumps and set the forecourt alight.’
    • ‘Only recently a vehicle crashed into the fence at the corner of the junction.’
    • ‘Hundreds of holidaymakers trying to reach Heathrow Airport were left stranded when a lorry crashed into a railway bridge, spilling its contents on to the tracks below.’
    • ‘The next thing I remember is a big bang when her car crashed into mine.’
    • ‘I was unable to stop in time and my car crashed into the other vehicle.’
    • ‘Forced to slam on her own brakes as the vehicles immediately ahead crashed into the carnage, Sonya braced herself for impact.’
    • ‘The car crashed into a wall at the front of a house at 4.35 pm on Saturday.’
    • ‘A nurse on her way to work on New Year's Eve was killed with her husband when two men driving a stolen car crashed into their vehicle.’
    • ‘The soldiers' vehicle crashed into a wall after the shooting.’
    • ‘He died after his van crashed into a rubbish truck.’
    • ‘Officers investigating the tragedy said the car crashed into a tree and no other vehicle was involved.’
    • ‘Other times, vehicles crash into the riverside railings.’
    • ‘His car had crashed into two parked vehicles, and he had been shot in the head and neck.’
    • ‘Firefighters were called into action after a car crashed into a parked vehicle and two people were hurt.’
    • ‘As the lorry crashed into two cars and came to a halt, Mr Whaley jumped into the cab and cut the engine, while one of his colleagues called an ambulance.’
    • ‘Running a red light, the young man's car crashes into a vehicle driven by a woman.’
    • ‘High winds are thought to be responsible for a double-decker bus crashing through a barrier and into a ditch today.’
    smash into, collide with, be in collision with, come into collision with, hit, strike, ram, smack into, slam into, bang into, cannon into, plough into, meet head-on, run into, drive into, bump into, knock into, crack against, crack into
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1with object Cause (a moving object) to collide with an obstacle or another vehicle.
      • ‘A drunken motorist nearly crashed his car into a police vehicle before running away and leaving his baby lying next to the front seat.’
      • ‘Awakened in the night, he learned that his long-time friend had crashed his vehicle into a lamp-post, and had died with two passengers.’
      • ‘He crashed his motorcycle into the side of a car that swerved in front of him as he was trying to pass on a road north of Hamburg.’
      • ‘A mother who crashed her car while more than five-and-a-half times the drink drive limit has walked free from court.’
      • ‘A 19-year-old man told police he had been taken at gunpoint from Manchester city centre, made to take drugs and then crashed his vehicle.’
      • ‘As detectives closed in during an undercover operation, he crashed his car into a police vehicle.’
      • ‘If you use a mobile phone and you crash your car you are likely to be prosecuted.’
      • ‘A teenage driver killed his 16-year-old friend and then ran off after crashing a stolen car in Stanwell.’
      • ‘He jumped in fright, swerved and nearly crashed the cab.’
      • ‘A motorist had a lucky escape after crashing his car into a house and almost ending up in a pond in Southwick on Wednesday.’
      • ‘Police are looking for information after a stolen car was crashed and abandoned into Kirkwall's Peerie Sea.’
      • ‘My dad laughed so much he almost crashed the car.’
      • ‘The four are accused of intentionally crashing their car into a motorbike, killing a teenager.’
      • ‘They then drove across the playing pitch and crashed the stolen vehicle into the club's changing rooms.’
      • ‘Christopher died when he crashed the bike he was riding into a steel fencing chain on a car park at the back of the Reebok Stadium, Horwich, at around 7.30 pm on Sunday.’
      • ‘An army rifleman based in Warminster has been banned from driving for three months after crashing his car into a lamppost.’
      • ‘A popular Hampshire club cricketer died after crashing his car while double the drink-drive limit following a night out with friends.’
      • ‘A drink-driver was caught by police after crashing his car into a garden.’
      • ‘‘I crashed my bike and I didn't wear the helmet that day, so I had to stay in hospital for a week to recover,’ he recalls.’
      • ‘Salem Police say the man set fire to several patrol cars, then crashed his pickup truck into the Marion County Courthouse yesterday.’
      smash, wreck, bump
      View synonyms
    2. 1.2 (of an aircraft) fall from the sky and violently hit the land or sea.
      ‘a jet crashed 200 yards from the school’
      • ‘Air accident investigators were due at the isolated spot today to discover how and when the microlight crashed.’
      • ‘But the pair were killed when the private aircraft crashed into a field at Cudham Lane South and burst into flames at about 3.40 pm.’
      • ‘A man and woman from Yorkshire who died when their microlight aircraft crashed while flying home from Spain have been formally identified using DNA.’
      • ‘Witnesses said the aircraft crashed less than 60 yards from the landing strip.’
      • ‘Divers recovered the body of a helicopter pilot yesterday after his aircraft crashed into the sea off the Brough of Birsay in the morning.’
      • ‘More than 105 people were believed dead after a Nigerian airliner crashed into a densely populated area in the northern city of Kano yesterday.’
      • ‘An airliner crashed in thick fog and burst into flames as it made its final approach to an airport yesterday, killing 20 of the 22 passengers and crew.’
      • ‘In June, a glider crashed near Helmsley as its pilot took part in the British National Gliding Championships, hosted by the Wolds Gliding Club in Pocklington.’
      • ‘The aircraft crashed shortly after take-off, killing the defendant and injuring the plaintiff.’
      • ‘For the second time in four months, a veteran aviator has walked away from his downed aircraft after crashing while landing.’
      • ‘It was assumed the aircraft had crashed into the Mediterranean Sea but a sea search failed to find any signs of the doomed aircraft, and its crew were posted missing in action.’
      • ‘But in 1992, one of those helicopters crashed in the jungle.’
      • ‘The gyrocopter crashed into a cornfield at Slamleys Farm, Great Notley, near Braintree, Essex, at 5.30 pm.’
      • ‘If an aircraft crashes on land it's a lot easier to establish why.’
      • ‘Police said the Pegasus microlight crashed after the pilot fell out of the aircraft but no people on the ground are reported to have been hurt.’
      • ‘A passenger jet crashed on landing in Nigeria yesterday, killing at least 103 people on board - many of them schoolchildren.’
      • ‘A Colombian airliner has crashed in a remote mountainous area of Venezuela killing all 160 people on board.’
      • ‘Twenty-four people were feared dead yesterday after a Swiss airliner crashed in a muddy wood a few kilometres away from Zurich airport.’
      • ‘A pilot who died when his gyroplane crashed in North Yorkshire could have lost control when the aircraft's seat worked loose, according to air accident investigators.’
      • ‘Two company executives and three flight crew were killed when their private jet crashed shortly after take-off.’
    3. 1.3with object Cause (an aircraft) to fall from the sky and land violently.
      • ‘Almost 3,000 people died three years ago when four hijacked airliners were crashed.’
      • ‘At the more extreme end, some individuals and groups crash aeroplanes or blow up buildings.’
      • ‘‘Some years ago, Mike spectacularly crashed his light aircraft, but fortunately survived,’ emails Paul.’
      • ‘When asked what she'd done she said she'd crashed her hang glider.’
      • ‘And a friend of mine built his own aeroplane, crashed it, fixed it and then flew it again.’
      • ‘On his second operational flight in a Sopwith Pup, he stalled just after take off at Dunkirk and crashed the aircraft, breaking his leg and gashing his head.’
      • ‘He crashes an aircraft that others might live.’
      • ‘I wasn't very good at hang-gliding, I crashed my glider, cricked my neck.’
      • ‘He died Aug.10, 1896, from injuries received after crashing one of his hang gliders two days earlier.’
      • ‘He has crashed the aircraft and sustained serious injuries.’
      • ‘The fourth time he landed the aircraft, he crashed it.’
      • ‘This trainee air force pilot died last week, crashing his training aircraft while on a navigational training flight.’
  • 2Move or cause to move with force, speed, and sudden loud noise.

    no object ‘huge waves crashed down on us’
    with object and adverbial of direction ‘she crashed down the telephone receiver’
    • ‘She watched the waves crash down onto the shore as the sun set, and she smiled.’
    • ‘The ocean sent winds in from both sides as waves crashed violently against the rocky cliffs.’
    • ‘In Cuba, huge waves crashed into Havana, swamping neighborhoods up to four blocks inland with floodwaters reaching up to nearly a meter in some places.’
    • ‘The shore at the part we were at seems to have a kind of shelf that means the waves come in and crash against it - the noise is unbelievable particularly considering it was a gorgeous day and not a breath of wind.’
    • ‘Shortly after the young family ran to safety, the wall came crashing down forcing dozens of people to run from neighbouring houses and works.’
    • ‘He then crashed onto the floor and started laughing again.’
    • ‘Huge waves were yesterday crashing into Cuba's westernmost areas, with heavy rains reported to have cut off several communities.’
    • ‘Attempting a vault, her right foot missed the springboard and she crashed headfirst at full speed into the horse.’
    • ‘I gasped when I saw the ocean crashing against the shore in the distance.’
    • ‘The waves crashed against the shore and the air smelt of salt and see breeze.’
    • ‘At high tide, waves crashed over sea walls in coastal towns.’
    • ‘When I was 4 I was at the beach just chilling on an inner tube and a huge wave crashed down on me and flipped me over.’
    • ‘The cup wobbled, then crashed to the floor with a tinkle of glass.’
    • ‘One piece of ceiling crashed down in front of me in a whirl of dust.’
    • ‘North Yorkshire landscape photographer Joe Cornish has a particular fondness for his picture of waves crashing over Whitby pier during a winter storm.’
    • ‘In retaliation, the little girl knocks over the entire table, sending the game and its pieces crashing to the floor.’
    • ‘Ashlee got hit by the water, full force, crashing her into her garage door.’
    • ‘The fire brigade and police took hundreds of calls as high winds brought trees, telephone and power lines crashing down and damaged buildings.’
    • ‘Winds of 120 mph and drenching rain tore off rooftops, hurled debris through the air and sent huge waves crashing into buildings.’
    • ‘Moments later John Varley was on the end of a move to crash the ball into the roof of the net to level the scores.’
    • ‘I sit and listen to the waves as they crash against the rocks.’
    • ‘I sat on a bench for a good 15 minutes wondering if I might be soaked to the skin any minute while I watched the waves crashing and listened to the noise of them rushing up and down the pebble beach.’
    • ‘On the resumption J.J. Donegan crashed a well placed shot off the Killeshin post, before Dermot Allen went close to equalising.’
    • ‘They hear a loud noise (Andrew crashing the keys on his piano) and run away.’
    be hurled, dash
    slam, bang, ram, smack
    View synonyms
    1. 2.1no object Make a sudden loud, deep noise.
      ‘the thunder crashed’
      • ‘The thunder crashes outside, and the windows blow open.’
      • ‘The thunder crashed once again, even louder than before.’
      • ‘Thunder crashed, louder than ever, and he felt a flutter of fear hit his stomach.’
      • ‘They could hear the heavy rain pounding down on the rooftop and the thunder crashing.’
      • ‘The game thundered along at a stunning pace as waves of noise crashed down from the stands.’
      • ‘Then the heavens opened, Hades bellowed, the thunder crashed, the water splashed, and a wall of rain came at us.’
      • ‘The wind howled and thunder crashed, disrupting his thoughts.’
      • ‘In a rare moment in the Arizona desert it poured, thunder crashed, and lighting flashed.’
      • ‘It was now raining pretty hard, and thunder was crashing loudly above the house.’
      • ‘Outside, thunder crashed, though there were few clouds in the day sky.’
      • ‘Lightning flashed outside, and thunder crashed through the house.’
      • ‘The thunder and lightning boomed and crashed above them for a while and then it started to rain.’
      • ‘The winds blew hard, and the thunder crashed in the midst of the howling.’
      • ‘People shrieked when the thunder crashed loudly and the rain began to pour.’
      • ‘Thunder crashed into the building and the lights turned off.’
      • ‘Thunder crashes above my head, I jump in slight fright, but reassure myself and keep walking.’
      • ‘Daisy woke the next morning to an empty living room and the sound of thunder crashing outside her house.’
      • ‘As they made their way towards the pub on the corner the thunder crashed again, almost overhead this time and the rain lashed down harder than before, causing the couple to break into a run.’
      • ‘Thunder crashed again as another bolt of lightning lit up the dark sky.’
      • ‘I once heard Mahler's Resurrection Symphony on a vertical Alpine train as a thunderstorm crashed all around.’
      boom, crack, roll, clap, explode, bang, blast, resound, reverberate, rumble, thunder, ring out, sound loudly, blare, echo, fill the air
      View synonyms
  • 3informal no object (of a business, a market, or a price) fall suddenly and disastrously in value.

    ‘silver prices crashed in early 1980’
    • ‘No wonder the shares crashed and pulled the rest of the market with them.’
    • ‘The big question now is whether art prices will crash in 2002.’
    • ‘By March 2003, the company's share price had crashed to an all-time low of $12.40.’
    • ‘What investors need to remember is that all companies can crash, and the value of every share can effectively go to zero.’
    • ‘Shortly after my parents got a divorce, the business crashed, and with it, his money diminished.’
    • ‘At the end of the decade, the business crashed with debts of £100,000.’
    • ‘With the average Welsh house price at 7 times my wages I am fervently hoping that prices crash, as are most of my friends.’
    • ‘In 2000 she boasted a paper fortune of £40 million but after the company's share price crashed, that was cut to £9 million.’
    • ‘Over this period, pension funds saw the value of their assets crash, since they invest largely in shares.’
    • ‘Losses were racked up, the dividend was axed and the shares crashed.’
    • ‘Share prices rose on the promise of profits and then crashed.’
    • ‘As the third world countries are largely oil importers, these bonds crash in value, increasing the cost of servicing old debt.’
    • ‘Such a scenario would evoke the end of the last big property boom in the early 1990s, when housing prices crashed.’
    • ‘That news sent its to shares crashing below 160p.’
    • ‘Have they no fear that the housing market is about to crash, and their shares may halve in value?’
    • ‘I am now in my early fifties and fear that shares may crash in the year when I retire. Any suggestions?’
    • ‘Not long after that the dollar rose and the business crashed.’
    • ‘So, if your company's share price has crashed, you can take the money and lose nothing.’
    • ‘And just when investors thought it had run out of people to blame, it blamed its own shareholders for panicking when the shares crashed.’
    • ‘In the last upturn, too much capacity came on line at once and prices crashed.’
    fail, collapse, fold, fold up, go under, founder, be ruined, cave in
    View synonyms
  • 4no object (of a machine, system, or software) fail suddenly.

    ‘the project was postponed because the computer crashed’
    • ‘My computer crashed recently and we had to buy a new one.’
    • ‘At least once a week, I'd get a panicked call from him just before lunch that the laptop had crashed.’
    • ‘Some owners complained that their systems were crashing during game play, sometimes with error messages popping up.’
    • ‘The computer system crashes on a regular basis (I work it out to be about twice a week at the moment).’
    • ‘The national air traffic control computer system crashed at 6am, and flights were being operated manually by air traffic controllers.’
    fail, collapse, fold, fold up, go under, founder, be ruined, cave in
    View synonyms
    1. 4.1North American (of a patient) suffer a cardiac arrest.
      • ‘We were told afterwards that she crashed in theatre because of the delay previously.’
      • ‘I crashed on the operating table three times, but out of the grace of God, and my will to live, I fought through it.’
      • ‘I kept crashing in the emergency room and they had to keep shocking me.’
      • ‘Six months separated out fairly well the patients who crash versus those who do not.’
      • ‘Doctors would often have to perform on-the-spot open heart surgery if a patient crashed.’
  • 5informal with object Enter (a party) without an invitation or permission.

    • ‘If you show up in scruffy jeans and a T-shirt they won't kick you out, but, if you are the kind to feel self-conscious, you may feel like you've crashed the wrong party.’
    • ‘I have a hunch she's going to try and crash this party too.’
    • ‘I ended up having my very own cabin for approximately a half hour, before the party was crashed by two young Mexican women.’
    • ‘Both feature a young woman named Melinda crashing a dinner party.’
    • ‘Everyone sprawled in a loose circle and he felt like an adult crashing a slumber party.’
    • ‘To my surprise, the door was unlocked, so crashing the party was pretty easy.’
    • ‘Sometimes it feels like crashing a private party, especially where it seems like all the commenters know each other and you're not sure whether you should pipe up.’
    • ‘When her expectations are sadly disappointed, she crashes a chic Montreal party and desperately tries to fit in.’
    • ‘Alex told me that Regina tried to crash the party and there was a rumor that she brandished a gun.’
    • ‘Nearly 3000 people are reported to have tried to crash the high society party to celebrate the marriage.’
    • ‘They had more important things to do than crash the party.’
    • ‘Grounded for the evening, the two sisters sneak out and decide to crash a party.’
    • ‘We crashed his party and sang until the sun came up.’
    • ‘Backes was arrested on Saturday when he crashed a party on Pelham Boulevard that was hosted by a St. Thomas student.’
    • ‘After an unsuccessful attempt to crash the band's after party and meet their idols in person, the boys have a near death experience.’
    • ‘A few months back I crashed a party at the offices of a Brighton firm that shares a building with Victoria Real.’
    • ‘After leaving that party, we crashed a party down the street, then headed to Chelsea, where we went to a couple bars and crashed another party.’
    • ‘The first night we went to this club that it just felt like we were crashing a bad highschool party.’
    • ‘But if you want to know, I crashed a party and met a hot girl.’
    • ‘I was forced to crash a birthday party on Saturday night.’
    gatecrash, come uninvited to, sneak into, slip into, invade, butt in on, intrude into, intrude on
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  • 6informal no object Go to sleep, especially suddenly or in an improvised setting.

    ‘I'll crash in the back of the van for a couple of hours’
    • ‘I crashed out on Phil's floor for the night and kept waking up because Phil was snoring and talking in his sleep.’
    • ‘We went back home and I crashed out in my dorm room.’
    • ‘Rory crashed in the hospital waiting room once we got there.’
    • ‘I crashed out at about 9pm last night and slept until 5am this morning.’
    • ‘I crashed out as soon as I had located some painkillers.’
    • ‘I crashed out for about 5 hours of semi-restful sleep, being woken by the rain this morning.’
    • ‘Before I finally crashed out I was semi-watching TV, and ‘Rambo: First Blood’ was on.’
    • ‘In all our years of friendship he's always forced me to crash on the couch, or put himself on the floor.’
    • ‘I eventually crashed out at 2am.’
    • ‘Two of them then, equally cheerily, climbed into his bed (the third crashed out on the sofa).’
    • ‘I turned around and went back to the hotel and they kept going, went up to the supermarket and got some supplies so I went back to the hotel and just crashed out straight away.’
    • ‘Ne'er do well Maggie Feller has finally been ejected from her parents' house and is forced to crash on her sister's couch.’
    • ‘This afternoon I crashed out on the couch.’
    • ‘Rejection swamps her, both in the workplace and in the ‘pitstop’ house in which she has been forced to crash until better times arrive.’
    • ‘We made it back to the place we were sleeping and crashed out.’
    • ‘After a few minutes of waiting patiently for her to awake I crash in the chair I'm sitting in from the long, tiring, confusing day.’
    • ‘Back at the hotel I crashed out, and woke in time for breakfast.’
    • ‘Friday morning I was woken up around 3:30 by the kitty, so for the second night in a row I gave up and shut her in the bedroom and crashed out on the couch.’
    • ‘I was tired, so I crashed out on a sofa in reception.’


  • 1A violent collision, typically of one vehicle with another or with an obstacle.

    ‘a car crash’
    • ‘In the Netherlands, hundreds of vehicles were involved in crashes, but no fatalities were reported.’
    • ‘Additionally, 54 % of all alcohol-related fatal crashes happened on weekends.’
    • ‘The accident was the latest in a string of crashes where cars have careered off the road near the green.’
    • ‘Tributes were paid yesterday to young sweethearts who were killed in a horrific car crash at an accident blackspot.’
    • ‘It seems that the majority of vehicle crashes can be avoided by minor changes in driver behavior.’
    • ‘A high-speed head-on car crash claimed the lives of a teenager and two elderly women, an inquest heard.’
    • ‘A level crossing keeper has been suspended after yesterday's rail crash in Lincolnshire.’
    • ‘One person was killed and another six seriously injured in two crashes on the A64 yesterday.’
    • ‘So far this year, a total of 41 people have been killed in road crashes in North Yorkshire, compared to last year's total toll of 80.’
    • ‘Police are keen to speak to any witnesses to the collision or anyone who saw either vehicle before the crash.’
    • ‘However, the former mountain bike professional admitted afterwards it was a case of the bravest survived on a slippery circuit which saw countless crashes and numerous falls.’
    • ‘My parents were taken to the accident and emergency department after a car crash near the motorway.’
    • ‘A soldier lost control of his Army vehicle and caused a crash, a court heard.’
    • ‘Two children and a teenager were fighting for their lives today after separate road crashes involving buses.’
    • ‘The mother of a woman who died in a car crash near Scarborough today paid tribute to her loving, caring daughter.’
    • ‘The cars run closely together in big packs, making an enormous crash nearly inevitable.’
    • ‘The moment you walk away unscathed from a car crash is, I can attest, a euphoric experience.’
    • ‘High speed crashes, often accompanied by fire or explosions, hindered identification of bodies.’
    • ‘Speed has been determined to be one of the most common contributing factors in vehicle crashes.’
    • ‘A police officer was taken to hospital after the police car he was travelling in was involved in a crash with two other vehicles.’
    accident, collision, smash, bump, car crash, car accident, road accident, traffic accident, road traffic accident, rta, multiple crash, multiple collision
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1 An instance of an aircraft falling from the sky to hit the land or sea.
      • ‘Another possibility was a crash on landing caused by failure of landing gear and brakes.’
      • ‘In the meantime, Monday's seaplane crash left many families in mourning right before Christmas.’
      • ‘In other words, he was not in charge of maneuvering the aircraft when the crash occurred.’
      • ‘As is usual in the case of an aircraft crash, many unidentifiable small pieces of aluminum and steel also surfaced.’
      • ‘Well, we're going to figure out what caused a fiery plane crash in Colorado.’
      • ‘A mother who survived a plane crash in the African bush is now helping educate a teenage girl she befriended as she recovered from her injuries.’
      • ‘He survived the crash by landing in ‘the biggest sand dune in the desert.’’
      • ‘He too gave evidence at the Board of Inquiry today, telling of how he believed he was thrown from the aircraft after the crash.’
      • ‘Most air crashes occur when a bird hits the windshield or is inducted into the engine.’
      • ‘According to authorities in Montrose, he remains unaccounted for after his seat was ripped from the aircraft during the crash.’
      • ‘He's been gored by an elephant and survived a plane crash.’
      • ‘He survived 28 crashes and shot down 40 German planes in just three months in the First World War.’
      • ‘The group has helped victims from more than 100 aviation crashes.’
      • ‘A pilot battled to avoid a plane crash as his stricken aircraft circled over Colchester’
      • ‘I don't get people who sit back and rack up the dollars, charging for interviews after they survive a plane crash.’
      • ‘They say that 70 percent of all air crashes occur during landing.’
      • ‘Jack, and 47 others, survives a plane crash on a remote Pacific island.’
      • ‘Deaths by unintentional violence were those by accidental means, such as drowning and aircraft crashes.’
      • ‘The fire was partially worsened by the inexperienced local fire personnel who have little or no training in aircraft crashes.’
      • ‘The outcome of a fatal accident inquiry investigating a fatal helicopter crash in Orkney has been delayed.’
  • 2A sudden loud noise as of something breaking or hitting another object.

    ‘he slammed the phone down with a crash’
    • ‘The recorder captured the sounds of loud thumps, crashes, shouts, and breaking glasses and plates.’
    • ‘The contents of her backpack spilled out, many items breaking with a resounding crash as a result.’
    • ‘Neighbours said they were woken by loud bangs and crashes.’
    • ‘Still holding on to the back of my seat he fell as I pushed it back, landing on the ground with a crash as the chair fell and knocked into the table.’
    • ‘James replied sharply, yelling over the crash of waves and thunder alike.’
    • ‘Between each crash of the waves, there was a boat zooming by.’
    • ‘Just as he was about to open his mouth to speak, there was a loud crash, followed by the screeching of the train's breaks.’
    • ‘The class jumped as a loud crash echoed through the hallways.’
    • ‘The plates in Hailey's hands dropped with a crash on the floor.’
    • ‘Immediately, with a great crash, the picture fell to the floor!’
    • ‘Suddenly, they hear a crash of thunder and see a flicker of lightening.’
    • ‘As we approached I saw huge flashes of fork lightning and heard the loudest thunder crashes I have ever heard.’
    • ‘I heard a loud crash as something broke against the wall.’
    • ‘She heard loud crashes coming from the room down the hall and she assumed that was where Mary was.’
    • ‘I was just dosing off the sleep when I heard a loud crash of thunder.’
    • ‘A hammer flew across the basement and landed with a crash on the pile.’
    • ‘Her words were broken off abruptly by a loud crash from a room in the apartment.’
    • ‘Everyone at the table winced as they heard the bathroom door slam, and a crash as something fell.’
    • ‘When I heard glass break and crashes in the store downstairs, I went down the stairs to investigate.’
    • ‘Della's reconstruction was interrupted by a loud crash of thunder.’
    bang, smash, smack, crack, boom, bump, thud, thump, slam, clunk, clonk, clash, clang
    View synonyms
  • 3A sudden disastrous drop in the value or price of something, especially shares of stock.

    ‘the crash of 1987’
    ‘a stock market crash’
    • ‘The price crash has been tough on the titanium industry.’
    • ‘Then came the crash of the stock market - in two years, the average of the Nasdaq fell to about one-third its highest level.’
    • ‘The stock market crash occurred in October of 1929.’
    • ‘We are not forecasting a property crash, but house-price falls seem likely.’
    • ‘A crash in the world price of coffee diminished government revenues and disrupted the local economy.’
    • ‘On the other hand, others are nervous about the high level of the stock market and fear that a crash of unprecedented scale is in the making.’
    • ‘After the great crash of October 1987, the biggest single day drop in Wall Street history, the market took less than two years to recover the lost ground.’
    • ‘If there is a crash and the U.S. economy goes into a recession, profits will undoubtedly suffer.’
    • ‘One of the key triggers to a price crash is rising unemployment.’
    • ‘The authorities are determined to avert a worldwide slump in share prices like the crashes of 1987 or 1929.’
    • ‘We lost the farm in a land crash, and we moved onto 2 1/2 acres on the outskirts of Bettendorf, Iowa.’
    • ‘The stock market crash of October 1987 was still fresh in everyone's minds.’
    • ‘Fears are growing of a crash in house prices amid increasing signs that sellers are being forced to accept price cuts and calculations that show housing has never been so overvalued.’
    • ‘The director of Bell Lawrie White has been in the business for 35 years and has seen his fair share of market crashes but he remains touchy about the use of the term.’
    • ‘It was the day of the stockmarket crash when we moved in and I remember we both looked at each other and thought ‘What are we doing?’’
    • ‘Last summer The Economist magazine predicted a housing crash in Ireland, stating that prices could fall by as much as 20 per cent.’
    • ‘Looking to the past, housing bubbles often lead to crashes with price drops on homes that average from 25 to 30 percent.’
    • ‘Canadian farmers feared the same would happen with wheat, prompting a loss of exports and a crash in prices.’
    • ‘If an economic crash is to be avoided and real employment growth to be maintained, our workers need to be well educated and move us up the value chain.’
    • ‘Although it is impossible to predict whether there will be a crash, property prices are unlikely to continue to rise at rates seen in the past 10 years.’
    1. 3.1 The sudden collapse of a business.
      • ‘The crash of the company left 400,000 motorists without insurance cover.’
      • ‘Last night the high-flying Sydney millionaire was struggling to explain the crash of the business he built from nothing.’
      failure, collapse, foundering, ruin, ruination
      View synonyms
  • 4A sudden failure which puts a system out of action.

    • ‘Most of these system crashes are caused by software incompatibilities.’
    • ‘Users do not need to worry about spyware, bugs, or computer crashes.’
    • ‘No matter how good your network is, data loss and system crashes are inevitable.’
    • ‘As far as I know, there has never been a system crash.’
    • ‘It is believed the fault was linked to an operation centre at West Drayton as air traffic controllers switched to a manual system during the computer crash.’


  • Done rapidly or urgently and involving a concentrated effort.

    ‘a crash course in Italian’
    • ‘On our second meeting, Hien introduced me to her parents-in-law, and I was immediately given a crash course in Vietnamese table manners.’
    • ‘Following American advice, the Scottish experts have stressed that most obese children should not be encouraged to undergo crash diets.’
    • ‘He enrolled in a crash course in Mandarin and headed to Shanghai, alone and unsure of exactly how things would work out.’
    • ‘Too lazy to read the book, I took a crash course in the films.’
    • ‘Doing those sort of those outdoor activities, it's a bit like a crash course in getting in touch with nature.’
    • ‘At least you know where you stand with a crash diet.’
    • ‘There's still time to book onto a swimming crash course.’
    • ‘After a crash course on the catwalk, those that measured up strutted the stuff of top African designers.’
    • ‘After a crash course on German the night prior to the interview, Nikki was offered the internship and will travel to Sydney soon to further her study of the German language.’
    • ‘But he also needs to take a crash course on the history of freedom.’
    • ‘Anyone who applies for a learners' licence has to undergo an hour-long crash course in road safety.’
    • ‘While the crash course is just for adults, for all the remaining courses, there are separate packages for adults and children.’
    • ‘The officers wanted to attend a naval conference in Berlin and were looking for a linguist who could give them a crash course in German.’
    • ‘January, it's the month of crash diets and New Year's Resolutions.’
    • ‘A woman saved the life of her baby granddaughter only days after learning life-saving skills following a crash course in first aid at her local pub.’
    • ‘She urged those planning to lose weight not to go on a crash diet but to eat three balanced, healthy meals each day, cut out fatty foods and take regular exercise.’
    • ‘The demand, ironically made by parents as well, is for crash courses.’
    • ‘Often, the recommended course isn't a crash diet but a commitment to a long-term change in eating habits.’
    • ‘Well I'm back on the crash diet of fruit and water again, but this time I'm determined.’
    • ‘The one-on-one sessions did more than give executives a crash course on the Web.’
    intensive, concentrated, telescoped, high-pressure, strenuous, vigorous, all-out, thorough, in-depth, all-absorbing, total-immersion, rapid, urgent
    View synonyms


  • With a sudden loud sound.

    ‘crash went the bolt’
    • ‘Crash went the waves on the rocks.’
    • ‘The elephant first tried to sleep in a crib just like your baby cousin John has - and then it went crash.’
    • ‘And as the boy was stooping over the open chest, crash went the lid down.’


  • crash and burn

    • informal Come to grief or fail spectacularly.

      • ‘When people realize that they can lose their social security money in the stock market, this plan will crash and burn.’
      • ‘But high-powered competition in the online auto field has already caused some firms to crash and burn over the last few months.’
      • ‘Was my grand plan going to crash and burn before the first-period bell had even rung?’
      • ‘What if I crash and burn, like so many other American tourists?’
      • ‘That means at some stage I'm going to crash and burn, because I really don't see it as risky.’
      • ‘Though I've seen plenty of female juvenile players pass into adulthood without serious damage, I've also seen way too many crash and burn on the threshold of maturity.’
      • ‘And although I have plenty of faith in my son's ability on his chosen instrument, I felt without the time and effort put in, he'd possibly crash and burn.’
      • ‘Just as often, public careers can crash and burn.’
      • ‘And of course, it had to crash and burn because the critics didn't fawn.’
      • ‘She's a single mom, a child star who didn't crash and burn, and a two-time Oscar winner.’


Late Middle English: imitative, perhaps partly suggested by craze and dash.




Main definitions of crash in US English:

: crash1crash2



  • A coarse plain linen, woolen, or cotton fabric, used for curtains and towels.


Early 19th century: from Russian krashenina ‘dyed coarse linen’.