Definition of firestorm in US English:

firestorm

noun

  • An intense and destructive fire (typically one caused by bombing) in which strong currents of air are drawn into the blaze, making it burn more fiercely.

    figurative ‘the incident ignited a firestorm of controversy’
    ‘within the firestorm every building was burned to a shell’
    • ‘But French executives know even modest job cuts will ignite a political firestorm.’
    • ‘The massive quake killed more than 140,000 people as buildings collapsed and firestorms turned the capital into a raging inferno.’
    • ‘The inscription on the monument generated a firestorm of controversy.’
    • ‘This paper will generate a firestorm of controversy, wide media interest, and perhaps even calls for a public inquiry.’
    • ‘Radio warnings effectively mobilized fire brigades and civil defence workers but neither could control the firestorms which swept across northern Tokyo.’
    • ‘Oxygen in the atmosphere will burn with this inbound debris and ignite superheated atmospheric firestorms that will consume much oxygen.’
    • ‘A firestorm swept across the city. 75 per cent of all buildings suffered severe structural damage.’
    • ‘Army assistance was at the bushfire's front line less than a day after firestorms devastated Canberra's western suburbs on January 18.’
    • ‘These created so much fire that a firestorm developed.’
    • ‘It ignited a national firestorm of protest by civil rights and women's groups.’
    • ‘Together, they have produced a book that has ignited a firestorm in Great Britain that is almost certain to spread to the United States.’
    • ‘A bombing raid on Hamburg resulted in a firestorm that killed more than 50,000 people.’
    • ‘In parts of the city, the fires joined up to create a firestorm.’
    • ‘The audio on the originally released disc caused a firestorm of controversy.’
    • ‘This accident, and the subsequent investigation, sparked a firestorm of protests.’
    • ‘A firestorm would result: the heat in the central area rises so high that the fire consumes all available oxygen.’
    • ‘Some of the greatest losses in Los Alamos occurred not in firestorms but from lower-intensity surface fires.’
    • ‘My grandfather vanished in one of the firestorms that raged in Tokyo during the American bombing campaigns.’
    • ‘Promoting abstinence in America carries a guarantee of being ridiculed in a firestorm of controversy.’
    • ‘Only one minute long, it killed 3,000 people and ignited firestorms that burned for three days, forever changing the face of the Bay Area.’
    blaze, conflagration, inferno, holocaust
    View synonyms

Pronunciation

firestorm

/ˈfī(ə)rˌstô(ə)rm//ˈfaɪ(ə)rˌstɔ(ə)rm/