err on the side of caution

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Related to erred on the side of caution: give rise to, pick up the slack, within means

err on the side of caution

To avoid risky or irresponsible behavior; to be very cautious. I like to err on the side of caution and always keep some money in my savings account. Since we don't know where we're going, let's err on the side of caution and leave an hour early.
See also: caution, err, of, on, side

err on the side of caution

COMMON If you err on the side of caution, you decide to act in a careful way, rather than take risks. It is better on your first few weights sessions to err on the side of caution, and start with a weight which is lighter than you think you can handle. Note: People use other words instead of caution, according to the subject they are discussing. When I discussed the matter with ministers in July I said that we should err on the side of generosity.
See also: caution, err, of, on, side
References in periodicals archive ?
It was nothing real serious, I just sprained a ligament or something,'' Atchison said, noting that the Mariners erred on the side of caution and ``shut me down for a little bit.
We have probably erred on the side of caution, because if we caution a player for simulation we are effectively calling him a cheat and that is the worst thing you can call anyone.
He cited cases where employers have lost millions of dollars in production because they lacked an immediate way to gauge quake damage and erred on the side of caution.