Torts Intervening Cause Question

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Mr. S
Posts: 4
Joined: Tue Nov 29, 2011 2:04 am

Torts Intervening Cause Question

Postby Mr. S » Tue Nov 29, 2011 2:21 am

If the risk of harm of your negligent act is foreseeable but the exact harm that occurs is not foreseeable would you be held liable under the Wagonsmound and Palsgraf view of foreseeability.

For ex: In the E and E the example essay question in the book talks about a scenario where the defendant negligence causes a 7,000 lb. blower to fall from the height above the roof of the hospital and crash straight down onto the ground which causes an explosion from the chemicals in the acid storage room located in the hospital 70 ft away.

Would you say this explosion was reasonably foreseeable or would you label it as a superceding cause?

I am having a tough time with if your negligent act is the proximate cause if it is reasonably foreseeable to cause harm but the exact harm you have created is not reasonably foreseeable result of your actions.

Thank you!

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istara
Posts: 149
Joined: Wed Feb 02, 2011 10:05 pm

Re: Torts Intervening Cause Question

Postby istara » Tue Nov 29, 2011 10:59 am

What are the types of harms you worry about when dealing with a 7000 lb blower? Someone getting squished? Someone losing a limb, dying? Getting electrocuted?

How about the explosion next door? Probably not..

The example seems to be trying to parallel Palsgraf.

Be careful about using "superseding cause".. What would be the cause here that supersedes the negligence? Was the hospital negligent in how it was storing the chemicals? If it was, you'd still have to be in a non-comparative-fault jurisdiction for the superseding cause principal to take away all liability.




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