West Virginia Law Review

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The apparent tendency of recent legislation to recur to the early conception of liability regardless of fault has called attention again to that much discussed subject, and particularly to that manifestation of it which we call the rule in Rylands v. Fletcher. It is not the purpose of the writer to discuss the theoretical merits of that rule or to engage in any controversy as to its scope or utility. Assuming its existence and recognition in some jurisdictions, the purpose of this article is to analyze the West Virginia cases involving the doctrine with a view to ascertaining the extent of its adoption by the courts of this state. This will necessitate, however, a brief discussion of what the doctrine is understood to be and the limitations which have been placed upon it.

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