Expressions used in Everyday Spoken English in Social and Professional contexts

in the firing line

in the firing line
Meaning(s)
1) in a position where you are likely to be criticised or blamed for something
  • How to MemorizePopularity HighProfessional HighSocial
    • be in the firing line/take someone out of the firing line
  • Analysis
    To be 'in the firing line' can literally mean to be in a position where you are at risk of gunfire or of being shot. Figuratively to be 'in the firing line' means you are in a situation where you are likely to be punished or subjected to criticism or blame because of your actions. "She was a big part of that decision. Now that everything has gone wrong she's bound to be in the firing line." similar in meaning to be 'in the hot seat'. This is an informal idiomatic expression.
  • Social Examples (Basic)
    1. The politician found himself in the firing line for inappropriate comments he made at a recent speech. He quickly apologised for any offence that he might have given.
    2. I paid £300 to get my car fixed, the mechanic is going to be in the firing line if it doesn't work.
  • Professional Examples (Basic)
    1. Ever since we issued that product recall, Paul has been having to deal with angry customers. I think it's only fair we take him out of the firing line for a while and let someone else deal with them.
    2. I have been in the firing line for long enough it's about time someone else took responsibility around here.

  • Professional Examples (Advance)
    1. The company is in the firing line for engaging in corporate espionage in order to undercut their rivals for a lucrative contract. They insist that their actions were entirely above board.
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