put out a fire

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put out a fire (third-person singular simple present puts out a fire, present participle putting out a fire, simple past and past participle put out a fire)

  1. (idiomatic) To address a problem, especially an unexpected one caused by the incompetence, negligence, or misconduct of another person.
    The manager had to put out the fire after a raw hamburger was served to a customer.
    • 2021 September 22, Guillem Balagué, “Barcelona: The toxic battle ripping apart a European giant”, in BBC Sport[1]:
      Laporta is getting fed up with putting out all the fires that keep emerging around the club every time Koeman opens his mouth, while the Dutchman, protected by a bulletproof contract, is probably thinking 'as you sow, so shall you reap', and only just resisting adding the phrase: "Come on then, sack me!"
  2. Used other than figuratively or idiomatically: put out a fire.