wench ( winch )

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Senior Member
Hello, this is Orlando Bloom in talk show. He is talking about a episode when he fall from fourth floor.

it was just a meter and a half down to the left, I could have just jumped straight from the window, but instead I got onto this rusty piece of drain piping and fell back three floors and landed between, on a first–from a fourth floor window onto a first floor roof terrace– between some iron railings and an old washing machine that had been left out. So I was–it was a narrow escape just from that fact. And then, I lay there and wasn't able to move anything. And I was completely freaked out. They got a helicopter, they couldn't get to me. Eventually they got a fire engine and they got a, wenched a fireman over who knocked through the doors and got me, got me out of there

What does it mean wench here?
  • Myridon

    Senior Member
    English - US
    It's a typo for "winched." They used a winch (a mechanical system of pulleys and cables/ropes/etc).


    Senior Member
    I think the intended word is winched, meaning "used a winch" (that is, a piece of machinery that uses a rope and pulleys). The rescuers used a rope and an arrangement of pulleys to get a firefighter to him.

    (Cross-posted with Myridon and Packard.)


    Senior Member
    USA English
    Since the OP refers to a "talk show" and doesn't tell us whether a transcript is involved or someone just trying to transcribe it, I wouldn't call it a "typo" without knowing how the text got into the post.

    I have no idea of who "Orlando Bloom" might be, but in some regions in the U.S., the 'i' and 'e' sounds are swapped and "engine," for example, is pronounced like "injun."


    Senior Member
    Orlando Bloom is English - from Kent, according to IMBd. I don't know if the pronunciation you mention, SDG, is typical of that part of England or not. But it sounds like the type of mild mispronunciation that many people might make, and it also sounds like the sort of misunderstanding that someone creating a transcript might make, too.


    Senior Member
    USA, English
    I googled "Fire Fighting Equipment, list" and got several including a rather long one on WIKI. None listed a "winch" as a piece of fire fighting equipment. Several listed "wrench".

    I still think that it is a typo for "winch" but I am not entirely ruling out that there is some unknown word out there or that a "wrench" was not the misspelled word, and that the wrench was used to ratchet the device in place. (This last sounds like a stretch to me, but remotely possible.).

    But it does not appear that a "winch" is part of standard fire fighting gear.

    Addendum: After all that typing an additional Google search yielded this site that sells fire fighting winches: https://www.warn.com/fire_rescue/winches.shtml


    Modwoman in the attic
    English - United States
    I've spent the past forty years in and around firefighting.

    While a winch is not a standard piece of firefighting equipment, some fire apparatus are equipped with them. It seems the most likely possibility here. I can't think of a way a wrench would be used to accomplish this, and as a BE speaker, wouldn't Bloom refer to that as a "spanner?"

    It should also be kept in mind that Bloom may not be conversant with the appropriate term. If a block-and-tackle arrangement, or what in the US we call a "come-along" had been used, he might have referred to it as a "winch."


    Senior Member
    British English
    If you want to be bothered you can search for the text in Google to find that there is only a single hit, a video of an interview with a transcript. His pronunciation is slightly unusual and falls part way between "winched" and "wenched". I think it is a case of lip flutter and tongue stall - it certainly is not a typical pronunciation from any part of Britain.

    It's not a typo, it's an error. It's not a wrench, it's a winch.


    Senior Member
    English UK
    Here's Orlando Bloom telling the same story to Homme Arena Magazine in 2001 (my highlighting):
    OB: I was trying to get onto a friend's roof terrace. It was a meter and a half from the window, but I landed on a drainpipe and fell back three floors. [...] They tried bringing a helicopter in to rescue me, but it couldn't land. Then they used a crane to winch over a fireman.
    cross-posted with Andy
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