grind to a halt

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grind to a halt

To halt progression very abruptly, especially in an ultimately detrimental or undesirable manner. Likened to a machine or automobile that stops functioning due to the grinding of gears. Our project will grind to a halt if the CEO pulls his approval. Work on the tax legislation ground to a halt in Congress this week.
See also: grind, halt
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

grind to a halt

Fig. to slow down and stop. Every day about noon, traffic in town grinds to a halt. The bus ground to a halt at the corner and someone got off.
See also: grind, halt
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

grind to a halt

Also, come to a grinding halt. Gradually come to a standstill or end. For example, Once the funding stopped, the refurbishing project ground to a halt, or She's come to a grinding halt with that book she's writing. This expression alludes to a clogged engine that gradually stops or a ship that runs aground.
See also: grind, halt
The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer. Copyright © 2003, 1997 by The Christine Ammer 1992 Trust. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

grind to a halt

COMMON
1. If a process or an activity grinds to a halt, it gradually becomes slower or less active until it stops. The peace process has ground to a halt.
2. If a vehicle grinds to a halt, it stops slowly and noisily. The tanks ground to a halt after a hundred yards because the fuel had run out.
3. If a country grinds to a halt, all transport in it stops so people are unable to do the things they usually do. The whole country grinds to a halt after an hour's snow.
See also: grind, halt
Collins COBUILD Idioms Dictionary, 3rd ed. © HarperCollins Publishers 2012

grind to a halt (or come to a grinding halt)

move more and more slowly and then stop.
1999 Times Traffic is expected to grind to a halt throughout the West Country as up to a million sightseers make the trip.
See also: grind, halt
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017

grind to a ˈhalt/ˈstandstill

,

come to a grinding ˈhalt

stop slowly: All work on the building has ground to a halt because of a shortage of materials.Every Friday night traffic comes to a grinding halt in Hammersmith.
This idiom refers to the way a very large machine slowly stops working, with some of its parts grinding (= rubbing) together.
See also: grind, halt, standstill
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017

grind to a halt, to

See come to a grinding halt.
See also: grind
The Dictionary of Clichés by Christine Ammer Copyright © 2013 by Christine Ammer
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References in periodicals archive ?
A commission statement warned bluntly: "In 2009 the EU economy is expected to grind to a standstill."
The national jobless total is predicted to rise by 1.4 per cent from this year's 5.7 per cent of the labour force, says an EU forecast, warning that the whole European economy is looking likely to "grind to a standstill".
The national jobless total is predicted to rise by 1.4 per cent from this year's 5.7 per cent, says an EU forecast, warning that the European economy is likely to "grind to a standstill".
Miles Shipside, commercial director of Rightmove, said: "The southerly chill has spread north as prices grind to a standstill."
So business at these establishments will grind to a standstill for four consecutive days (five for the One Stop Shop).I hope the staff will enjoy their extended break.
If we make the final, the country will grind to a standstill."