High court throws out fly in water appeal
OTTAWA -- Canada's Supreme Court Thursday denied damages to a man who claimed major psychological damage after finding a dead fly in his bottled water.
Waddah Mustapha, 47, was awarded damages of $341,775 by a lower court over the 2001 incident when Mustapha noticed the fly as he was about to install the water jug in his kitchen in Windsor, Ontario.
Mustapha had claimed he suffered a battery of psychological maladies after seeing the fly in the bottle that was never opened. They include depression, constipation, impotence, insomnia, and an inability to drink coffee because of the water content.
However, in a 9-0 ruling, the judges said the bottling company, Culligan of Canada Ltd., could not have reasonably foreseen the consequences of his finding the fly, the Globe and Mail reported from Ottawa.
In the ruling, Justice Robert Blair wrote Culligan could not be found liable for psychiatric harm where it "consists of an exaggerated reaction by an obsessive person of particular sensibilities to what, in reality, is a relatively minor and trivial incident -- the sight of a dead fly in a bottle of consumer water."
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