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panic button

an alarm button for use in an emergency, as to summon help.
push / hit / press the panic button, Informal. to give way to panic in a distressing situation.
Origin of panic button
allegedly first used in reference to emergency bell systems on World War II bombers such as the B-17 and B-24 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for panic button
  • As storms batter global finance, depositors' fingers are on the panic button.
  • If this was intended to press the panic button, it seemed to succeed.
  • If you sense danger and you have a panic button on your car keys, keep your hands on the panic button until help arrives.
  • Install a panic button under the counter to quickly notify the police in case of a robbery.
  • Make sure your employees know how to operate the panic button.
  • Install a panic button in the office that is connected to a security service.
  • The suspect took the bag and as he left the store he again ordered the cashier not push the panic button.
  • Keep your keys close by and press the panic button if you hear a noise outside your home or someone trying to get in your house.
British Dictionary definitions for panic button

panic button

a button or switch that operates any of various safety devices, for use in an emergency
(informal) hit the panic button, press the panic button, to react to a situation by demanding emergency action; become excited; panic
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Slang definitions & phrases for panic button

panic button

Related Terms

hit the panic button

The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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