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Moch Co. v. Rensselaer Water Co.

Court of Appeals of New York
159 N.E. 896 (N.Y. 1928)


Facts

Rensselaer Water Co. (water company) (defendant) entered into a contract with the city of Rensselaer to provide water to the city for sewer flushing, street sprinkling, service to schools and public buildings, and service to fire hydrants for a term of years. Water was also to be furnished to private individuals and buildings. During the contract, a building owned by Moch Co. (Moch) (plaintiff) caught fire. The nearby fire hydrant did not possess adequate water to put out the fire, and the fire spread to Moch’s warehouse and destroyed its goods. Moch brought suit against the water company alleging negligence, and the trial court granted judgment for Moch. The appellate court reversed and Moch appealed, alleging claims for breach of contract, common law negligence, and breach of a statutory duty.

Rule of Law

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Issue

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Holding and Reasoning (Cardozo, C.J.)

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  • A “yes” or “no” answer to the question framed in the issue section;
  • A summary of the majority or plurality opinion, using the CREAC method; and
  • The procedural disposition (e.g. reversed and remanded, affirmed, etc.).

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