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See also: turn out and turn-out


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turn +‎ out, from the phrasal verb.


turnout (plural turnouts)

  1. The act of coming forth.
  2. The number or proportion of people who attend or participate in an event (especially an election) or are present at a venue.
    • 2012, The Hyperink Team, Essential Tools For Managing A Restaurant Business, Hyperink Inc (→ISBN):
      Depending on the location of a restaurant, weekdays may equally experience low turnout.
    • 2016, Alistair Jones, Britain and the European Union, Edinburgh University Press (→ISBN), page 212:
      A country which has always had an exceptionally good turnout for its elections to the European Parliament is Belgium. Every single election has had a turnout of over 90 per cent. The reason for this is that there is compulsory voting in Belgium.
  3. (US) A place to pull off a road.
    When towing a trailer, use the turnouts to let faster traffic pass.
    • 2011, Douglas Steakley, Photographing Big Sur: Where to Find Perfect Shots and How to Take Them, The Countryman Press (→ISBN), page 56:
      This is a location that should not be missed, especially during late afternoons in winter. This field can be photographed from the narrow driveway that leads down to the restaurant or from the turnout south of the restaurant, ...
  4. (rail transport, chiefly US) A place where moveable rails allow a train to switch tracks; a set of points.
    • 1960 June, “Talking of Trains: Sunday on the G.N. line”, in Trains Illustrated, page 322:
      [...] the Welwyn bottleneck will be relaid with high-speed turnouts and resignalled for reversible working.
    • 1981 August 18, National Transportation Safety Board, “Role of Dispatcher”, in Railroad Accident Report: Rear-End Collision of Union Pacific Railroad Company Freight Trains Extra 3119 West and Extra 8044 West, Near Kelso, California, November 17, 1980[1], archived from the original on 29 March 2022, retrieved 29 March 2022, page 30:
      When the engineer of Extra 3119 West reported that he was in trouble, the VAN train was about 4 1/2 minutes from the east turnout of Dawes passing track and about 4 miles ahead of Extra 3119 West. The dispatcher probably could have averted the accident by immediately acting to align the turnout at Dawes to the passing track and instructing the VAN train engineer to slow down sufficiently to allow for the time it would take for the CTC command to be executed.
  5. (dated) A quitting of employment for the purpose of forcing increase of wages; a strike.
  6. (dated) A striker.
    • 2002, Brian Lewis, The Middlemost and the Milltowns (page 86)
      Meanwhile on the eighteenth a party of soldiers dispersed a crowd in Over Darwen, and the following day a detachment came to protect the Hargreaves' large mill at Accrington, where one of the partners, anticipating a visit from the turnouts, had sworn in several hundred of the workpeople as special constables.
  7. That which is prominently brought forward or exhibited; hence, an equipage.
    A man with a showy carriage and horses is said to have a fine turnout.
    • 1886, Peter Christen Asbjørnsen, H.L. Brækstad, transl., Folk and Fairy Tales, page 113:
      "Yes," answered Reynard, "but old Bruin sat on the sledge and drove just as if he had stolen both horse and turn-out." "Bad luck to him, the rascal!" said the farmer.
    • 1990, Thomas Ryder, The Carriage Journal (volume 27, number 4, pages 164-165)
      Occasionally turnouts would be seen driven randem in circus parades.
  8. Net quantity of produce yielded.
  9. The act of putting out to pasture.
    Duties include feeding and turnout of horses.


Derived terms[edit]