Don Bateman … a senior engineer at Honeywell in Seattle, quickly changes the subject if anyone tries to give him credit for saving hundreds, perhaps thousands, of lives over the past decadewrites Don Phillips.
However, the 73-year-old Bateman is widely recognized in aviation as having developed what is formally known as the "enhanced ground proximity warning system," which can help avert disaster for a plane on the wrong course.
"We owe him a debt of gratitude," said John Lauber, Airbus's senior vice president for safety. "Don Bateman is the individual who almost single-handedly wiped out controlled flight into terrain." Lauber was using the aviation term for perfectly good aircraft flown into the ground, the greatest killer in aviation until Bateman came along.