Meaning of “emergency” in the English Dictionary

"emergency" in British English

See all translations

emergencynoun [ C or U ]

uk /ɪˈmɜː.dʒən.si/ us /ɪˈmɝː.dʒən.si/

B1 something dangerous or serious, such as an accident, that happens suddenly or unexpectedly and needs fast action in order to avoid harmful results:

How would disabled people escape in an emergency?
Is the emergency exit suitable for wheelchairs?
The pilot of the aircraft was forced to make an emergency landing on Lake Geneva.

More examples

(Definition of “emergency” from the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)

"emergency" in American English

See all translations

emergencynoun [ C ]

us /ɪˈmɜr·dʒən·si/

a dangerous or serious situation, such as an accident, that happens suddenly or unexpectedly and needs immediate action:

In an emergency, dial 911 for an ambulance.

(Definition of “emergency” from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)

"emergency" in Business English

See all translations

emergencynoun [ C ]

uk /ɪˈmɜːdʒənsi/ us plural emergencies

a dangerous or serious situation that happens unexpectedly and needs fast action in order to avoid harmful results:

Aim to build up risk-free savings in case of emergency.
The governor declared a state of emergency as flooding forced more than 1,400 residents from their homes.

emergencyadjective [ before noun ]

uk /ɪˈmɜːdʒənsi/ us

intended to help deal with an emergency:

Another $2 billion in surplus revenue will be set aside, by law, in a state emergency fund.
emergency measure/plan/procedure Emergency measures introduced by major credit card issuers to stem the tide of fraud should be in place by the autumn.
emergency aid/assistance/help

done very quickly because there is an emergency:

Seven board members called for an emergency meeting.

(Definition of “emergency” from the Cambridge Business English Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)