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 What is "good judgment"?
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Advanced Member
534 Posts

Central Coast, CA



Posted - 11/16/2017 :  2:32 PM                       Like
Working on a project recently, I found myself considering the question, What is "good judgment" in the context of riding a motorcycle? It's easy enough to recognize bad judgment when you see it--accelerating through an intersection on the yellow as an oncoming left turner does the same, leaning into a blind right curve that is tighter than expected, overtaking a car as it turns into a driveway on the left. In fact, most crashes I read about could be uncontroversially attributed to bad judgment.

But trying to encourage good judgment by offering a list of pretty obvious "don'ts" seems unhelpful. I came up with a few things that sketch an outline of the good kind, but I'm interested in what you think.
  • You have a plan to complete a task. I'm talking short-term here, like a plan for crossing an intersection or rounding a bend. Most likely it's not explicit; your inner voice doesn't recite it. But without actually thinking about it, maybe you will watch the oncoming vehicle with its blinker on, slow down, and move to the right side of your lane.

  • You possess the skills you will need.

  • You have expectations. You can visualize how it will succeed, otherwise you wouldn't attempt it.

  • The plan identifies contingencies where something goes wrong, early-warning cues, and actions to take.

  • You are experienced at the task. You've done it before, or it is an incremental step from something you've done. It isn't a significant leap outside your repertoire. Experience informs expectations and contingencies.

James R. Davis
Male Administrator
17303 Posts

Houston, TX


GoldWing 1500

Posted - 11/16/2017 :  4:47 PM Follow poster on Twitter  Join poster on Facebook as Friend  
Very pleased to see you found us again, Dan.

Your posts are always well received because they are thoughtful and informative.

For any new visitors, Dan has a history here of being able to document statistics and facts from professional research - he knows of what he speaks.
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