near miss

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near miss

A situation in which danger or problems are barely avoided. Used literally, it usually refers to a potential collision of some kind. It was a near miss when that deer jumped out in front of my car! Luckily, I swerved in time and managed to avoid hitting it. It was a near miss for the senator, whose charges were dropped due to a technicality.
See also: miss, near

near miss

A narrowly avoided mishap; also, an attempt that falls just short of success. For example, It was a near miss for that truck, since the driver had crossed the center strip into on-coming traffic , or Her horse kept having a near miss in every race, so she decided to sell it. This expression originated during World War II, when it signified a bomb exploding in the water near enough to a ship to damage its hull. Soon afterward it acquired its present meanings.
See also: miss, near