- 1Involving or causing sudden great damage or suffering: a catastrophic earthquakeMore example sentences
- His life takes a sudden twist when a strong earthquake and aftershocks cause catastrophic damage to the subway system, trapping a train and its handful of passengers in harm's way.
- Tonight those winds are picking up in the Mexican resort town of Cancun, which could suffer catastrophic damage from this powerful storm.
- The magnitude of the natural disaster that the Indian Ocean rim countries suffered from the catastrophic earthquake and tsunami is said to be the worst in living memory.
- 1.1Involving a sudden and large-scale alteration in the state of something: the body undergoes catastrophic collapse toward the state of a black holeMore example sentences
- In the enormous densities of the early moments of the Big Bang the result would have been a catastrophic annihilation of matter and antimatter into radiation.
- In an instant, an avalanche of electrons is rolling over the surface in a catastrophic flashover.
- For the big stars (at least 8 times more massive than the Sun), this collapse is catastrophic.
- 1.2Of or relating to geological catastrophism.More example sentences
- Similarly, Darwin also describes the formations of rocks and minerals from the catastrophic effects of dynamic geological periods.
- A number of contrasting geological processes can produce circular structures, ranging from catastrophic gas expulsion to form pockmark craters to meteorite impacts.
- In contrast, the mineralized zones, above the topography created by the pre-mineralization igneous rocks, were not affected by this catastrophic sedimentation.
- 2Extremely unfortunate or unsuccessful: catastrophic mismanagement of the economyMore example sentences
- The institutionalization of welfare was catastrophic because of the extremely high rates of mortality that typically characterized these asylums.
- More than twenty years after Rampton's landmark report, years of failure to educate Black children have been catastrophic for those young people and their communities.
- The nomination, unfortunately, was followed by a truly catastrophic general election campaign in which he won only six states.
- More example sentences
- But those kind of arguments tend to be right until the moment arrives when they're suddenly wrong - really wrong, catastrophically wrong.
- It is the essence of catastrophically bad thinking to insist on choosing one or the other.
- The majority of us aren't heroic people who instantly know what to do when their life is catastrophically upturned, and flawlessly execute on that knowledge.