Definition of meltdown in English:



  • 1A disastrous event, especially a rapid fall in share prices.

    ‘the 1987 stock market meltdown’
    • ‘The patient also learns how to cope with unavoidable stress without having a meltdown.’
    • ‘Ohio State's win over Washington State and Penn State's over Nebraska were overshadowed by, among other results, meltdowns by Michigan State against Cal and Iowa against Iowa State.’
    • ‘I'd be the last to whinge about tight deadlines, technology meltdowns, the stress, the strain, the always urgent need to come up with an alternative expression for ‘and the wall did its job.’’
    • ‘First there was the Nasdaq meltdown and the devastation of the dotcoms and the idea of the casual workplace.’
    • ‘The last thing a small business needs is a computer meltdown just when it's time to run off the monthly accounts.’
    • ‘While no one expects hedge-fund values to be listed in the daily newspapers, everyone would be relieved if fewer meltdowns appeared in the headlines.’
    • ‘On the ice, the emphasis no longer is on the meltdowns he used to suffer when the pressure was the greatest, when opponents tried to get under his skin.’
    • ‘The public has long been suspicious of big business, but the recent financial meltdowns have created even more disdain and distrust.’
    • ‘It's been a long time since I've had a major meltdown, and this time it was just about a puppy.’
    • ‘Only the most brilliant of chief executives can move the share price and even here the evidence in the face of the dotcom meltdown is scant.’
    • ‘But he was saved from a total electoral meltdown by only a handful of votes.’
    • ‘Remember the anticipations of catastrophes brought about by computer meltdowns.’
    • ‘Will any of the business models that emerged over the past five years survive the meltdown on Wall Street?’
    • ‘Let the kids and grandkids deal with it, just like they can deal with the deficit, rogue nuclear meltdowns, and the collapse of the currency market.’
    • ‘All three sell products to a wide range of markets, which helps protect them from a meltdown in any one sector.’
    • ‘Given this me-too drive to imitate and adore, why are celebrity flame-outs and meltdowns so fascinating?’
    • ‘As a result, sudden meltdowns - such as the Asian financial crisis - can turn flourishing countries into basket cases overnight.’
    • ‘Perhaps the most critical lesson learned from last year, however, is the heavy price corporate reputations pay for such meltdowns.’
    • ‘That's why Yu's comments triggered such angst among those who see the makings of a dollar meltdown.’
    • ‘We asked them to offer practical lessons that they learned from the meltdown.’
    1. 1.1informal An outburst of severe emotional distress; a nervous breakdown.
      ‘they wondered what could have triggered her meltdown’
      • ‘She is a powerhouse of brooding, internal frustration on the verge of a meltdown.’
      • ‘Even when Tina smiles she looks as if she's about to have a complete and utter mental meltdown.’
      • ‘The success of the vineyard, which Grace admits was a boon for his ego, coincided with personal and emotional meltdown.’
      • ‘He made no secret of his personal meltdown last year.’
      • ‘The slightest distraction, even something as seemingly benign as a water fountain or a beam of sunlight, can trigger a "meltdown," in which autistic patients are overcome with anxiety.’
      • ‘Megan still has meltdowns, or tantrums, because she finds it very difficult to communicate.’
      • ‘She won't win Celebrity Big Brother, but we'd like her to stay in the house long enough to finish her meltdown.’
      • ‘The last thing the shop will want is some woman having a long, loud, massive meltdown in their front room.’
      • ‘He's moving toward a meltdown through most of the movie, but he's really a good kid.’
      • ‘Computer geeks are extremely unlikely to suffer one of those spectacular emotional meltdowns that make for good television.’
      • ‘They can have a mid-life meltdown if they feel they must, but nobody really cares.’
      • ‘Five years later, he suffered another meltdown at a press conference in New York.’
      • ‘Margo's spectacular meltdown at a dinner party is so effective because there are barbs of truth sprinkled in with the vain wailing and gnashing of teeth.’
      • ‘King delivers a searing portrait of a troubled man approaching meltdown.’
      • ‘On the verge of a workaholic meltdown, Bella's doctor advises her to go to the Caribbean for a month.’
      • ‘Her mental meltdown had as much to do with genes as it did with personal crises.’
      • ‘Teenager Holly Hamilton is tired of moving every time her single mum Jean has another personal meltdown involving yet another second-rate guy.’
      • ‘During a decisive meltdown, she kills her husband with the help of her obese maid.’
      • ‘He takes great joy in making her smile, and we feel his helplessness at her meltdowns.’
      • ‘Maggie takes in the despondent Victoria, a bright and sensitive girl whose life is on the brink of total meltdown.’
  • 2An accident in a nuclear reactor in which the fuel overheats and melts the reactor core or shielding.

    • ‘Over the years, Congress has created one program after another to insure individuals and businesses against a panoply of hazards, from natural disasters to bank failures to nuclear reactor meltdowns.’
    • ‘Somewhere along the way, a pipe bursts in the reactor core and meltdown begins.’
    • ‘Some nuclear critics had asserted that a core meltdown would inevitably breach containment.’
    • ‘I can't walk into a nuclear power plant and start fiddling with knobs and dials, without causing a nuclear meltdown.’
    • ‘Even as a result of the only major meltdown, at Three Mile Island in the United States a quarter of a century ago, no lives were lost.’
    • ‘Fearing a meltdown, the reactor officer shuts down the submarine's main source of power.’
    • ‘I was 21 years old and it was three days after the partial meltdown of the reactor core.’
    • ‘In May 1967 radioactivity was released into the environment when fuel caught fire in a reactor and suffered a partial meltdown.’
    • ‘A year ago one of the company's nuclear plants came dangerously close to a core meltdown.’
    • ‘They show you presentations of how top military bases were hacked and nuclear installations almost brought to meltdown.’
    • ‘Lipsio said he took little comfort in knowing that the meltdown at the Palm Beach elections office happened during a trial to help spot such problems.’
    • ‘Go and try out the Nuclear Power Plant Simulator and see how many meltdowns you cause before you manage to survive an entire shift.’
    • ‘Like a meltdown in a nuclear power plant, the conflagration now threatens to take the whole examination system down with it.’
    disaster, catastrophe, calamity, tragedy, act of god, devastation, crisis, holocaust, ruin, ruination, upheaval, convulsion, blow, shock, reverse, trouble, trial, tribulation
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