Recently a tenant in a 2nd floor flat came home from work and left a tap on whilst he fell asleep causing overflow in the kitchen (the plug left in) causing considerable damage to the downstairs flat. The tenant claims he turned the tap fully off but the tap must not have ceased flowing as it would usually take 15-20 seconds to do this at he left the room before it did. The reason it would take so long as the tap was stiff but tenants never reported this to the landlord previously. Once this happened the landlord called in a plumber the very next day who recognized and fixed the tap, installing a whole new set.
My question is can the landlord (or rather landlords insurance) claim full negligance on part of the tenant, as they did not ensure the water ceased flowing. Or are the tenants in a position as they think they are in that the faulty tap was to blame for the water not ceasing to flow? Also has the fact a plumper was called and fixed the problem and Ill adverted acknowledgement of at least some responsibility on part of the landlord/tap?
This is not a simple issue but the insurance are seeking the tenant be charged with full negligence whilst the tenant claims the tap did not work as it should, but surely they are still responsible for not ensuring the water ceased flowing?
Anyone with any thoughts on this would be great to hear from. The tenant does not have any insurance to cover himself and probably not enough to cover the damage..