Citation.  All E.R. 1
Brief Fact Summary.
Plaintiff’s mine was flooded by the defendant’s reservoir of water.
Synopsis of Rule of Law.
Any person who brings onto his land something capable of and likely to cause harm for his own purposes is liable for it if harm does, in fact, result.
Plaintiff worked a mine in his property. Defendant was a neighbor of the plaintiff, and operated a mill. He decided to build a reservoir of water to assist in the operation of the mill. After the reservoir was constructed and filled, it broke its barriers, and flooded the plaintiff mine.
Is the defendant liable to the plaintiff?
Yes, the defendant is liable to the plaintiff because the water was likely to cause harm.
The court finds for the plaintiff on the grounds that any person who brings onto his land something capable of and likely to cause harm for his own purposes is liable for it if harm does, in fact, result. Here, the defendant brought the water onto his land for his own purposes, and while the court found that the defendant did not actually participate in the construction of the reservoir, he employed people who were negligent in it’s construction, and accordingly is liable.