pile·​up ˈpī(-ə)l-ˌəp How to pronounce pileup (audio)
: a collision involving usually several motor vehicles
: a jammed tangled mass or pile (as of motor vehicles or people) resulting from collision or accumulation

Example Sentences

A five-car pileup slowed traffic. a pileup of e-mail messages that needed to be dealt with
Recent Examples on the Web Every province and territory in Canada issued an emergency weather warning on Saturday, as winter storms left thousands without power, grounded hundreds of flights and caused the pileup of dozens of cars on a highway in Ontario. Arkansas Online, 26 Dec. 2022 According to a California Highway Patrol accident report obtained by CNN Business, Tesla’s Full Self-Driving software caused an eight-car pileup in the San Francisco Bay Area in November. Maren Estrada, BGR, 22 Dec. 2022 Cars, cargo trucks, lorries and other vehicles can be seen in the pileup. Jessie Yeung, CNN, 28 Dec. 2022 The first fatality came in the first pileup, which started about 8 a.m. near Halsey at the Oregon 228 interchange, according to a news release from Oregon State Police. oregonlive, 22 Oct. 2022 Monday’s pileup of more cancellations and delays, by the way, comes on the heels of a weekend that amounted to another miserable stretch for fliers. Andy Meek, BGR, 9 Aug. 2022 The state is trying to avoid another pileup of claims — real and fraudulent — by upgrading the antiquated EDD systems that were overwhelmed by claims during the pandemic. Madalyn Amato, Los Angeles Times, 5 July 2022 Zelensky grasps the power of a pileup, the inspiration by repetition that calls everyone into the plural. Susan J. Wolfson, The Atlantic, 18 June 2022 The pileup of cases has driven a normally three-month wait for an initial review to at least seven, the data shows. Lisa Rein, Washington Post, 5 Dec. 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'pileup.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Word History

First Known Use

1900, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of pileup was in 1900

Dictionary Entries Near pileup

Cite this Entry

“Pileup.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/pileup. Accessed 30 Jan. 2023.

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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