Nuisance and Negligence are both Specific torts. Torts fall into three general categories: intentional torts (e.g., intentionally causing an injury to a person); negligent torts (e.g., causing an accident by failing to obey traffic rules); and strict liability torts (e.g., liability for making and selling defective products). Intentional torts are wrongs that the defendant knew or should have known would result through his or her actions or omissions. Negligent torts occur when the defendant’s actions were unreasonably unsafe. Unlike intentional and negligent torts, strict liability torts do not depend on the degree of care that the defendant used. Rather, in strict liability cases, courts focus on whether a particular result or harm manifested.
According to Salmond, nuisance consists in causing or allowing to cause without lawful justification, the escape of any deleterious thing from one’s land or from anywhere into land in possession of the plaintiff, such as water, smoke, gas, heat, electricity, etc.
Nuisance can be public or private depending on the amount of people it affects. Public nuisance is when the rights of the society as a whole or a part of the society. Private nuisance is when a person’s use or enjoyment of his property is ruined by another.
Negligence on the other hand signifies failure to exercise standard of care which the doer as a reasonable man should have exercised in the circumstances. Lord Wright states that “Negligence means more than headless or careless conduct, whether in commission or omission; it properly connotes the complex concept of duty, breach, and damage thereby suffered by the person to whom the duty was owed.”
What is the difference between Nuisance and Negligence?
Nuisance is when the harm done is intentional, whereas in case of Negligence is when due to lack of proper care there is annoyance caused. Nuisance invites a stricter liability than that in case of negligence. There is a fault based liability in case of negligence but in case if Nuisance causes any material harm it will invite a strict liability.
All in all, it is point to note that in most cases of oil spillage, the plaintiff would not know whether to sue for negligence, for nuisance, whether public or private or under the rule in Ryland v. Fletcher. On how to bring the action, a lot depends on the facts of each case; but, it may be wiser to sue for all in alternatives, and also add a claim simply for damages on the basis of Ubi Jus lbi Remedium.
I have always been against Glorifying Over Work and therefore, in the year 2021, I have decided to launch this campaign “Balancing Life”and talk about this wrong practice, that we have been following since last few years. I will be talking to and interviewing around 1 lakh people in the coming 2021 and publish their interview regarding their opinion on glamourising Over Work.
If you are interested in participating in the same, do let me know.
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