Definition of firestorm in English:



  • 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.

    ‘within the firestorm every building was burned to a shell’
    figurative ‘the incident ignited a firestorm of controversy’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘Army assistance was at the bushfire's front line less than a day after firestorms devastated Canberra's western suburbs on January 18.’
    • ‘It ignited a national firestorm of protest by civil rights and women's groups.’
    • ‘Oxygen in the atmosphere will burn with this inbound debris and ignite superheated atmospheric firestorms that will consume much oxygen.’
    • ‘The inscription on the monument generated a firestorm of controversy.’
    • ‘A firestorm would result: the heat in the central area rises so high that the fire consumes all available oxygen.’
    • ‘A bombing raid on Hamburg resulted in a firestorm that killed more than 50,000 people.’
    • ‘Together, they have produced a book that has ignited a firestorm in Great Britain that is almost certain to spread to the United States.’
    • ‘The audio on the originally released disc caused a firestorm of controversy.’
    • ‘The massive quake killed more than 140,000 people as buildings collapsed and firestorms turned the capital into a raging inferno.’
    • ‘In parts of the city, the fires joined up to create a firestorm.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘These created so much fire that a firestorm developed.’
    • ‘This accident, and the subsequent investigation, sparked a firestorm of protests.’
    • ‘This paper will generate a firestorm of controversy, wide media interest, and perhaps even calls for a public inquiry.’
    • ‘But French executives know even modest job cuts will ignite a political firestorm.’
    • ‘Promoting abstinence in America carries a guarantee of being ridiculed in a firestorm of controversy.’
    • ‘A firestorm swept across the city. 75 per cent of all buildings suffered severe structural damage.’
    • ‘Radio warnings effectively mobilized fire brigades and civil defence workers but neither could control the firestorms which swept across northern Tokyo.’
    blaze, conflagration, inferno, holocaust, firestorm
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