Definition of puncture in English:



  • 1A small hole in a tyre resulting in an escape of air.

    ‘she was on her way home when she had a puncture’
    • ‘Luck was on his side and somehow he escaped both a fall and a puncture.’
    • ‘Even on such short trips car travel could be full of difficulties with punctures to tyres or the engine boiling going up hills.’
    • ‘Of the destroyed eggs, 39 had small circular holes punctured in the eggshell (the punctures sometimes formed short rows).’
    • ‘The only possible worry is punctures, but the off-road scooters have special tyres which should prevent that from happening.’
    • ‘In days of yore, he was in demand for a whole variety of ‘small jobs’ such as fixing punctures on bikes, the main method of transport in those times.’
    • ‘The happy couple were driving back into Washington and, as they hit the Beltway, one of their car tyres sustained a puncture.’
    • ‘First rule when dealing with a puncture is to check the tyre that the cause of the puncture is removed.’
    • ‘Patton, an elite category mountain bike racer, twice suffered punctures to his bike but battled on to beat many top names in the the field of more than 300 riders.’
    • ‘The advantages are obvious: the airless tyre can never suffer a puncture or valve failure and ends the need to check tyre pressures.’
    • ‘But with technical problems which cars experience such as engines blowing off, gear boxes getting damaged or tyre punctures being part of this game, anything could happen.’
    • ‘We've had a few punctures and a tyre shred plus chickens running out at us but otherwise we're doing ok.’
    • ‘However, for him the problems with start soon first a puncture at his left-back tyre followed just after one lap by another one, this time at his left-right tyre.’
    • ‘But Charles found himself out of contention after sustaining a tyre puncture.’
    • ‘We drove on but the damage had caused a puncture and we limped out of the stage, although the crew changed the wheel and repaired the bumper in just six minutes.’
    • ‘It seals the puncture and the tyre can then be reinflated ready for use.’
    • ‘When garbage contains hard objects, it can contribute more directly to accidents by causing damage to vehicles, punctures or dangerous swerves.’
    • ‘‘My wheelchair is constantly getting punctures because of the smashed glass,’ said Mr Everton.’
    • ‘Earlier, the duo suffered in the first and second stages with two tyre punctures, but managed to overcome the challenge until finally when they stormed past Jambo at a snail's pace with a blowing engine.’
    • ‘His right rear tyre then suffered a puncture after a light touch from Ralf Schumacher's front wing as the German passed him on lap five.’
    • ‘And if these ballots have indentations, punctures, dents on them - you know, the wind didn't make them, people came to the polls and people made those marks on those ballots.’
    flat tyre
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    1. 1.1A small hole in something such as the skin, caused by a sharp object.
      [as modifier] ‘a puncture wound’
      • ‘She didn't want him doing anything to make his puncture wound worse.’
      • ‘Wires lead from the array and appear through a skin puncture.’
      • ‘Uncontrolled bleeding from the puncture wounds.’
      • ‘A 40-year-old man received a puncture wound to his back after he stepped in to help a 19-year-old black woman who was being harassed by a group of youths at a bus stop.’
      • ‘I looked over at the ‘vampires’ warily and then stood up, rubbing the two puncture wounds on my neck.’
      • ‘Hold the finger and hand firmly to immobilize the finger as some patients's response is to pull away as you perform the skin puncture.’
      • ‘Allergic status was documented by puncture skin tests.’
      • ‘Injuries can lead to tetanus if people get puncture wounds.’
      • ‘Cover cuts and abrasions with waterproof dressings. Exercise great care with all sharps to prevent puncture wounds, cuts or abrasions.’
      • ‘The quality of the skin puncture sample is very technique dependent.’
      • ‘These puncture wounds scar and deform the fruit.’
      • ‘Glove failures can be caused by punctures, tears by sharp devices, or spontaneous failures.’
      • ‘Clinically, progressive purpuric skin lesions and diffuse oozing from skin puncture sites are observed, often within hours of birth.’
      • ‘Apply a comfrey leaf ointment or compress to your cut, but do not use it on puncture wounds because the skin may heal faster than the tissue below.’
      • ‘The only negative aspect, was I got stuck in one of my toes by a sea urchin spine. I have since explored the puncture wound after coming home and found nothing.’
      • ‘Cosgrove dropped to the floor in front of the elderly man and ripped the fabric, exposing one skinny calf that had two red puncture marks marring the skin.’
      • ‘A 57-year-old patient of mine had a puncture wound of the foot while gardening.’
      • ‘Connecting wires were fed under the skin of the forearm and out from a skin puncture and the wounds were sewn up.’
      • ‘Reading of the puncture wounds in the children's throats, he guesses that their wounds and Lucy's were made by the same thing.’
      • ‘I'm sure you all remember the Belvedere College massacre over when an angry young student went on the rampage with a plank of wood with a nail in it. 8 people were treated for puncture wounds.’
      hole, perforation, prick, rupture, cut, nick, slit, leak
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  • 1Make a puncture in (something)

    ‘one of the knife blows had punctured a lung’
    • ‘David Millar is forced to drop back for emergency repairs to his bike, while Jan Ullrich punctures his front tyre.’
    • ‘Ishrat was seated next to Javed who was driving the car when the crime branch team fired and punctured the rear left tyre.’
    • ‘Well, chances are, those blows managed to puncture the brain, and they most likely died of internal bleeding, or maybe outer bleeding.’
    • ‘After the headmistress branded him a troublemaker and excluded him from the Christmas party, he punctured her car tyres with a nail and was swiftly expelled.’
    • ‘In last summer's accident, debris from a shattered tyre punctured a fuel tank and led to a catastrophic fire which brought down the plane 10 miles from where it had taken off, Charles de Gaulle airport in Paris.’
    • ‘They say the louts involved even left broken glass strewn on their path to puncture Rosemary's wheelchair tyres.’
    • ‘Scientists have recently ruled out the possibility that the stylets of certain mites are too short to puncture cells on the front surfaces of some ferns.’
    • ‘A 17-year-old youth was left with a fractured skull, punctured lung and a cracked rib after he was attacked in the town's Monkwick Avenue in March this year.’
    • ‘One bullet had punctured the spare tire and flattened it as well.’
    • ‘After slipping off his bike in the peloton, he had almost made up the distance, but then punctured his front tyre, and has slipped back again.’
    • ‘A police officer who used a knife to puncture the tyres of a car to stop it being driven by a group of drunken revellers has been convicted and warned he may face a jail sentence.’
    • ‘She didn't seem the least bit winded, though Shannon felt as if a knife were stabbing into his lungs, trying to puncture his chest cavity so that all the air would escape and he would suffocate.’
    • ‘Thomas, who is in Ward 22 at the hospital, is recuperating from the gunshot wounds he suffered to his chest last Friday, one bullet having punctured his lung.’
    • ‘The second bullet slammed right into his lung, easily puncturing the tissue and crushing his windpipe against the back of his neck.’
    • ‘The dog then bit several times at the back of Carlson's legs and then made contact with the back part of Carlson's right knee, puncturing the skin.’
    • ‘The perpetrator cut off the tyres, punctured the diesel tank and broke windows in the vehicle.’
    • ‘The single blow punctured a lung and he died in hospital a week later.’
    • ‘A shot was then fired, puncturing a front tyre on Mbambo's car,’ Matroos said.’
    • ‘You should protect the vital areas along the mid-line of the torso, where even a shallow wound might puncture heart, lungs, liver, kidney or bowel.’
    • ‘Detectives believe the killer punctured his car tyre to make him stay behind after work.’
    make a hole in, pierce, penetrate, rupture, perforate, riddle, stab, cut, nick, slit, prick, spike, stick, impale, transfix, lance, tap
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    1. 1.1[no object]Sustain a puncture.
      ‘the tyre had punctured and it would have to be replaced’
      • ‘It is thought he was shot as he repaired his car tyre, which the killer had probably punctured.’
      • ‘I was convinced we'd punctured, but somehow the tyres, and the suspension, remained unaffected.’
      • ‘They fired several rounds from handguns and semi-automatic rifles at the vehicle, which finally came to a halt about 500 metres from the depot with all four wheels punctured.’
      • ‘Local rider Michael Mulcahy rode a fantastic race after puncturing and finished a creditable 10th.’
      • ‘Unfortunately, Brown's hopes of a good result were dashed when a clash of wheels with another rider brought about a puncture.’
      • ‘Armstrong said the Spaniard's tyre had punctured as they braked for a corner.’
      • ‘Only then did he realise that one of his rear tyres had punctured.’
      • ‘The driver lost control of his Peugeot 405 after a tyre punctured.’
      • ‘To cap Flanagan's misfortune, he punctured with 15 miles to go and there was an immediate charge from the front of his bunch, capitalising on his ill luck.’
      • ‘Despite suffering two punctures during his first competitive drive in eight years, Malcolm Wilson and seventeen year old son Matthew took the title by 54 seconds from three-time winner Steve Petch.’
      • ‘Huge coal trucks have almost run Bonds's car off the road, and two local activists had their tires punctured when they went to file paperwork for a hearing.’
      • ‘Every time, a vehicle finds its tyre punctured in the middle of the road, the vendor control room of the area transmits signals to alert other vendors within a five kilometer radius.’
      • ‘Hamilton's men suffered four punctures in the first 15 miles, destroying their rhythm, and for a few miles there was patent indecision among them whether to wait or continue.’
      • ‘With eight miles remaining, the Irish trio were holding 1: 24 ahead but then tragedy struck when Mark Lovett punctured and they lost their momentum.’
      • ‘York-based rider Rob Smith was also a finisher, but clubmate Paul Brown was a non-finisher after puncturing in the early stages.’
      • ‘Yet he does not want to see that attack, which consisted of the car being covered in broken eggs and the tyres punctured, as yet another example of a sectarian attack upon him.’
      • ‘Lieutenant Barnes was forced back to base on one engine with countless holes in his ship and one tire punctured.’
      • ‘There we had eight punctures from the flint on the track during testing.’
      • ‘The rear tyre got punctured, but with the help of a couple of menial workers and a beggar, my father was able to push the car to the tyre repair garage.’
      • ‘The especially hardened leaf-tips puncturing through frozen ground make the plant a very welcome, if uninvited guest.’
  • 2Cause a sudden collapse of (mood or feeling)

    ‘the earlier mood of optimism was punctured’
    • ‘What little suspense there might have been was punctured for me by Howard disclosing most of it.’
    • ‘Its reputation of being a place of escalating communal tension has been punctured.’
    • ‘At this, Lance's ego seemed to be punctured slightly, but he kept at it.’
    • ‘Sigmund Freud's theories have been punctured and pricked with doubt, but anyone who argues that he should be dropped from the canon of Western civilization needs therapy.’
    • ‘A smug academic thinks he can intellectualise his way out of human problems of love and jealousy, and he is punctured.’
    • ‘Worse still is the title track - eight-and-a-half minutes of tedium and cliché interrupted by bad Riverdance impressions which really puncture the dark mood the song is trying to conjure up.’
    • ‘The company has punctured this fragile mood of optimism with a miscalculation of astonishing proportions.’
    put an end to, cut short, reverse, prick, deflate, flatten, reduce
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Late Middle English: from Latin punctura, from punct- pricked, from the verb pungere. The verb dates from the late 17th century.