Aegis Insurance Services, Inc. v. 7 World Trade Center Co., No. 11-4403 (2d Cir. 2013)Annotate this Case
7WTC stood on the northern edge of the World Trade Center site and as the North Tower collapsed on September 11, 2001, it damaged 7WTC. After burning for seven hours, 7WTC collapsed, destroying the electrical substation owned by Con Ed directly beneath the building. Con Ed, along with its insurers, filed suit against defendants, who designed, built, operated, and maintained 7WTC, alleging in relevant part that defendants' negligence caused the building to collapse. The court concluded that Con Ed failed to present evidence sufficient to raise a genuine issue of fact as to whether defendants' negligence was the cause-in-fact of Con Ed's injury. The court had little trouble concluding that the confluence of events that day demonstrated that 7WTC would have collapsed regardless of any negligence ascribed by plaintiffs' experts to the design and construction of 7WTC more than a decade earlier. It was simply incompatible with common sense and experience to hold that defendants were required to design and construct a building that would survive the events of September 11, 2001. Accordingly, the court affirmed the dismissal of the claims against defendants on this alternative ground.