third rail(redirected from 3rd rail)
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1. The rail that supplies the high voltage to power a train on an electric railway.
2. A subject that tends to be avoided because of its offensive or controversial nature: "Social Security, the 'third rail' of American politics" (Charles Stein).
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
1. (Railways) an extra rail from which an electric train picks up current by means of a sliding collector to feed power to its motors
a. a cause or topic that is considered extremely dangerous for a person to support or comment on
b. (as modifier): a third-rail issue.
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014
a rail in an electrified railroad that provides current to a car or locomotive.
Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary, © 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved.
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|Noun||1.||third rail - a rail through which electric current is supplied to an electric locomotive|
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