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drank polluted water from a well owned by the city and accessible to the public, but not part of the regular public water supply (Danaher v. Brooklyn, 1899, 119, N. Y. 241, 23 N. E. 745, 7 L. R. A. 593).

There are also several court decisions holding that a water company, a municipality or an individual furnishing water, when sued for damages for sickness or death caused by polluted water so furnished, may set up as a defense the contributory negligence of the plaintiff or the person who contracted the disease. In other words, if such person knew or should have known that the water was polluted and failed to take proper precautions against infection before drinking such water, many courts have held that this amounts to contributory negligence on his part which, if proved by the defendant in the case, will debar the plaintiff from recovering damages. Here again, in each particular case, it is a question of fact whether the person who contracted the disease has failed to take the proper precautionary measures and it is the duty of the jury to decide this question. For instance, in the case of Green v. Ashland Water Company, cited above, an administrator sued the Ashland Water Company for the death of the deceased, which was caused by typhoid fever contracted from drinking polluted water furnished by the company. The water company set up in defense that the polluted condition of the water had been well known in the vicinity for at least three years and that the deceased had drunk the water without boiling it or taking any other steps to prevent infection. The court held that, in view of the above facts, the plaintiff was debarred from recovering damages.

In the case of Hamilton v. Madison Water Company, 1917, 116 Me. 157, the court stated that in an action to recover damages for sickness due to polluted water, the water company might use as a defense the contributory negligence of the plaintiff.

As stated above, an individual or a municipal or other corporation supplying water is liable for sickness or death caused by the negligence of the person or corporation supplying the water, provided that the plaintiff affirmatively proves such negligence and shows that it was the cause of the sickness or death.

The company owes to its consumers the duty of exercising reasonable care and diligence in providing pure and wholesome water free from contamination (New Haven Water Company v. Russell, 1912, 86 Conn. 361, 85 Atl. 636; Lockwood v. Dover, 1905, 73 N. H. 209, 61 Atl. 32). In order to produce such a pure water supply, it is properly the duty of the company to investigate the sources and to take all reasonable measures necessary to prevent contamination. These principles of law apply alike to private water com

. panies and to municipal corporations which distribute water.

A few examples will illustrate more clearly the extent of this liability, applying them in the first instance to private water companies. During a period of low water, a private water company connected its mains directly to a badly polluted river. As has frequently happened in similar circumstances, an epidemic of typhoid fever occurred and the company was held liable for causing the death of a child from the disease, due to drinking the contaminated water (Kohlmeyer v. Ohio Valley Water Company, 1914, 58 Pa. Super. Ct. 63). The court remarked in a somewhat similar case decided in New Jersey, "water is a necessity of life, and one who undertakes to trade in it and supply customers stands in no different position to those with whom he deals than does a dealer in foodstuffs. He is bound to use reasonable care that whatever is supplied for food and drink shall be ordinarily and reasonably pure and wholesome" (Jones v. Mount Holly Water Company, 1915, 87 N. J. L. 106, 96 Atl. 860). In Pennsylvania an injunction against the furnishing of impure water by a private company was sustained by the court (Peffer v. Penn. Water Company, 1908, 221 Pa. St. 578, 70 Atl. 870). This is an example of a preventive remedy, rather than a compensatory one. No damages were recovered, but the court of equity restrained the continued supplying of an impure water.

Municipal corporations have been likewise held liable for sickness or death caused by contaminated water negligently furnished by them (Stables v. City of Rochester, 1919, 226 N. Y. 516, 124 N. E. 137, 5 A. L. R. 1396; Keever v. Mankato, cited above).

Typhoid fever contracted from the water supplied by an employer has also been the subject of several court decisions. As a rule, such circumstances come within State workmen's compensation laws. For instance, where an employee drank polluted water which had gotten into the drinking water supply due to a defective valve between the industrial and drinking water pipes, and the employer was ignorant of the fact, this was held to be an accident and an insurance company was required to pay indemnity Christ v. Pacific Mutual Life Insurance Company, 1924, 144, N. E. 161). So, too, it has been held that, where a hotel waitress contracted typhoid fever from drinking water supplied by the hotel, this was an accident and not an occupational disease (Frankamp v. Fordney Hotel Company, 1923, 193 N. W. 205). Somewhat similar decisions have been rendered in Wisconsin and Indiana (Vennen v. Dells Lumber Company, 1915, 161 Wis. 370, 154 N. W. 640; (Wasmuth Endicott v. Karst, 1922, 133 N. E. 609), but the Ohio Supreme Court has held to the contrary (Industrial Commission v. Cross, 1921, 136 N. E. 283).

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The esthetic possibilities of water-works properties have been recognized by many cities and companies and achieved in varying degrees by a number. Architecturally these attempts range in time at least from the first water works for Philadelphia, finished in 1801, with its Centre Square pump house of classic design, down through a long succession of pumping stations, towers and gatehouses to the notable and markedly successful treatment of the downstream face of the Kensico Dam at the lower end of the Catskill Aqueduct, New York City. Landscape treatment has ranged from relatively minor and not always successful "beautification" of grounds surrounding pumping stations, towers or reservoirs by planting flowers, shrubs and trees to large-scale landscape work on the Boston and Massachusetts metropolitan systems and in the immediate vicinity of the dams of the New York Water Supply. Somewhat related in effect, though different in object, have been numerous examples of reforestation of municipal- or company-owned drainage areas, some on a large scale.

If there is a comprehensive city plan under consideration the beautification of the water works property should fit in with that plan. A water plant plays an intimate part in the social and economic life of every citizen. It is a community enterprise and should be treated as such. A water plant is peculiarly adapted to beautification both from a practical as well as an esthetic standpoint. There is an appropriateness due to the nature of the business. The grounds and buildings are about all that are apparent to the eye, because 75 per cent of the value of the property is buried. It is obvious that beautiful surroundings add enormously to the value of the plant and especially is this true in the eyes of the public.


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