accident


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accident of birth

Any and all particulars surrounding one's birth (physical characteristics, social background, and even nationality) that are considered a result of parentage and the specific circumstances of birth, and are therefore entirely out of one's control. My poverty when I was young was merely an accident of birth; through hard work and determination, I was able to overcome it and lead a successful life.
See also: accident, birth, of

happy accident

A mistake or unplanned event that results in a beneficial outcome or pleasant surprise. The creation of penicillin was a happy accident that resulted from Alexander Fleming's discovery of mold growing in his agar plates.
See also: accident, happy

an accident waiting to happen

A person, thing, or situation that appears to be imminently dangerous or troublesome. Often but not always used somewhat humorously. Don't leave that ladder in the middle of the yard, it's just an accident waiting to happen! My toddler is starting to walk now, and she is just an accident waiting to happen.
See also: accident, happen, waiting

be a chapter of accidents

To be characterized by multiple problems or mishaps. Primarily heard in UK, Australia. Despite all of our planning, the birthday party was a chapter of accidents.
See also: accident, chapter, of

a chapter of accidents

A situation or series of events characterized by multiple problems or mishaps. Primarily heard in UK, Australia. Despite all of our planning, the birthday party was a chapter of accidents.
See also: accident, chapter, of

accidents (will) happen

Mishaps and setbacks are just a natural and inevitable part of life. This phrase is often said in an attempt to comfort someone after an accident has happened. A: "I am so sorry that I backed into your car!" B: "That's OK, accidents will happen." I know you didn't mean to spill your juice, sweetheart—accidents happen.
See also: accident, happen

(whether) by accident or design

Intentionally or not. Whether by accident or design, those high school kids have really created a solid, sustainable business.
See also: accident, by, design

more by accident than (by) design

Due more to coincidence or luck than to one's own skill or planning. To be honest, I feel like the massive popularity of the app is more by accident than by design. A: "This stew is delicious!" B: "Thanks, but it's really more by accident than design."
See also: accident, by, design, more

more by accident than (by) judgment

Due more to coincidence or luck than to one's own skill or planning. To be honest, I feel like the massive popularity of the app is more by accident than by judgment. A: "This stew is delicious!" B: "Thanks, but it's really more by accident than judgment."
See also: accident, by, judgment, more

by accident

Mistakenly or unintentionally. Oh geez, I must have left those files out by accident. Many great scientific discoveries happened entirely by accident.
See also: accident, by

Accidents will happen.

Prov. It is impossible to completely prevent things from going wrong. (Often used to console someone who has made a mistake or caused an accident.) Child: Mommy, I spilled grape juice all over the carpet! Mother: Don't cry, honey. Accidents will happen. Jill: I'm so embarrassed. I was just tapping on your window to wake you up. I didn't mean to break it. Jane: Accidents will happen.
See also: Accident, happen, will

have an accident

 
1. to experience something that was not foreseen or intended. Traffic is very bad. I almost had an accident. Drive carefully. Try to avoid having an accident.
2. Euph. to lose control of the bowels or the bladder. (Usually said of a young child.) "Oh, Ann," cried Mother. "It looks like you've had an accident!" Mother asked Billy to go to the bathroom before they left so that he wouldn't have an accident in the car.
See also: accident, have

an accident waiting to happen

COMMON
1. If you describe a situation or activity as an accident waiting to happen, you mean that they are likely to be a cause of danger in the future. A lot of the city's buildings are accidents waiting to happen. The sudden explosion of a real bullet on stage during the play was an accident waiting to happen.
2. If you describe a person as an accident waiting to happen, you mean that they are likely to cause trouble or have bad problems. He was getting a reputation for being wild — an accident waiting to happen.
See also: accident, happen, waiting

accidents will happen

People say accidents will happen to mean that accidents are a normal part of life and you should not blame anyone or be too upset about them. One of the things our society will not appreciate is that accidents will happen. We still look for meaning when pointless tragedy occurs.
See also: accident, happen, will

a chapter of accidents

BRITISH, FORMAL
If you talk about a chapter of accidents, you mean a series of unlucky events. Luckily for him, few people were witness to this chapter of accidents. In fiction, however, such a chapter of accidents can end up seeming comic. Note: This expression has been used many times by various writers. One of the earliest uses is `the chapter of accidents is the longest chapter in the book', the book being the story of a person's life or a record of a particular event.
See also: accident, chapter, of

an accident waiting to happen

1 a potentially disastrous situation, usually caused by negligent or faulty procedures. 2 a person certain to cause trouble.
1 1997 Times Accidents are often said to be ‘waiting to happen’. It does not take much imagination to see that the chaotic start to the Whitbread round-the-world race…could easily have ended in tragedy.
See also: accident, happen, waiting

accidents will happen

however careful you try to be, it is inevitable that some unfortunate or unforeseen events will occur.
This phrase is a shortened form of the early 19th-century proverb ‘accidents will happen in the best regulated families’.
See also: accident, happen, will

a chapter of accidents

a series of unfortunate events.
This expression was apparently coined by Lord Chesterfield in a letter to Solomon Dayrolles in 1753 : ‘The chapter of knowledge is a very short, but the chapter of accidents is a very long one’.
See also: accident, chapter, of

by ˈaccident

in a way that is not planned or organized: We met by accident at the airport.Helen got into acting purely by accident.
See also: accident, by

(whether) by ˌaccident or deˈsign

if you say that something happens by accident or design, you mean that you do not know if it has been planned or not: Mary was wearing the same T-shirt as me — whether by accident or design, I never knew.
See also: accident, by, design

ˌaccidents will ˈhappen

(saying) said when a small accident has happened, for example when something has been broken, to show that you do not consider it to be serious, or to excuse yourself for causing it: ‘I’m so sorry, I’ve just broken a plate.’ ‘Oh, never mind, accidents will happen.’
See also: accident, happen, will

a ˌchapter of ˈaccidents

a series of unlucky events or mistakes in a short period of time: The reorganization of the company has been a chapter of accidents!
See also: accident, chapter, of

an ˌaccident/a diˌsaster waiting to ˈhappen

a thing or person that is very likely to cause danger or a problem in the future because of the condition it is in or the way they behave: For many months local residents had been complaining that the building was unsafe, and that it was an accident waiting to happen.
References in periodicals archive ?
For example, two men died in a small aircraft accident caused by a severe cold weather storm in San Benito County, California.
Commenting on the statistics, Major-General Shaikh Sultan bin Abdullah Al Nuaimi, Ajman Police Commander-in-Chief, said that the efforts of the Ministry of Interior to develop methods to deal with traffic accidents and their fallout have led to improvement in the results of the indicators of traffic statistics for 2017 in Ajman.
The recognition of traffic-accident investigation reports prepared by authorized persons other than policemen could ease traffic after accidents, as the waiting period for the response and preparation of the report is lessened.
The accident came less than 12 hours after three bishops perished in a grisly road accident on the Embu-Makutano road.
Accident severity for the combined 50 Million Cities was 19.
ISLAMABAD -- Following remedial measures taken by the National Highways and Motorways Police, about 38 percent decrease has been observed in number of accidents on Grand Trunk Road (N-5) during 2016 in comparison with 2015.
According to the ROP's Directorate General of Traffic Facts and Figures 2016, there were 6,279 accidents in 2015, down from 6,717 in 2014.
flying, turbulence and wind, in-flight icing, fuel exhaustion, over-gross operation, power loss and other typical GA fatal accident scenarios.
According to data from the PNP Highway Patrol Group, factors contributing to human error in road accidents include reckless driving, bad overtaking and bad turns.
8220;Our app ensures that car accident victims get the help they need right on the spot -- and also the legal help they need once they leave the scene of an accident, which is something most people don't think about until it's too late.
Long Hill Road, motor vehicle accident, no injuries.
Prince Sattam, has approved the system as part of its efforts to cut down accident rates in the capital.
While the number of accident in Hajjah province amounted to 16 traffic accidents and in Dhamar provinces six accidents.
Local accident management company CRASH Services has responded to independent research by developing an accident assistance pack which is available to all Northern Irish motorists - and best of all its totally free.