Airworthiness Directives; Airbus Helicopters Deutschland GmbH Helicopters

SUMMARY

We propose to adopt a new airworthiness directive (AD) for Airbus Helicopters Deutschland GmbH (Airbus Helicopters) Model BO-105LS A-3 helicopters. This proposed AD would require inspecting the helicopter records to determine if there is a life limit for the tension-torsion (TT) straps installed in the helicopter lifting system, establishing a life limit if there is not one, and replacing each TT strap that has met or exceeded its life limit. This proposed AD is prompted by an error in the Airworthiness Limitations section of the Model BO-105LS A-3 maintenance manual. The proposed actions are intended to prevent failure of a TT strap and subsequent loss of control of a helicopter.

 
CONTENT

Federal Register, Volume 81 Issue 58 (Friday, March 25, 2016)

Federal Register Volume 81, Number 58 (Friday, March 25, 2016)

Proposed Rules

Pages 16100-16102

From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office www.gpo.gov

FR Doc No: 2016-06530

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DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION

Federal Aviation Administration

14 CFR Part 39

Docket No. FAA-2016-5247; Directorate Identifier 2015-SW-008-AD

RIN 2120-AA64

Airworthiness Directives; Airbus Helicopters Deutschland GmbH Helicopters

AGENCY: Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT.

ACTION: Notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM).

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SUMMARY: We propose to adopt a new airworthiness directive (AD) for Airbus Helicopters Deutschland GmbH (Airbus Helicopters) Model BO-105LS A-3 helicopters. This proposed AD would require inspecting the helicopter records to determine if there is a life limit for the tension-torsion (TT) straps installed in the helicopter lifting system, establishing a life limit if there is not one, and replacing each TT strap that has met or exceeded its life limit. This proposed AD is prompted by an error in the Airworthiness Limitations section of the Model BO-105LS A-3 maintenance manual. The proposed actions are intended to prevent failure of a TT strap and subsequent loss of control of a helicopter.

DATES: We must receive comments on this proposed AD by May 24, 2016.

ADDRESSES: You may send comments by any of the following methods:

Federal eRulemaking Docket: Go to http://www.regulations.gov. Follow the online instructions for sending your comments electronically.

Fax: 202-493-2251.

Mail: Send comments to the U.S. Department of Transportation, Docket Operations, M-30, West Building Ground Floor, Room W12-140, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., Washington, DC 20590-0001.

Hand Delivery: Deliver to the ``Mail'' address between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays.

Examining the AD Docket

You may examine the AD docket on the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov by searching for and locating Docket No. FAA-2016-

5247; or in person at the Docket Operations Office between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. The AD docket contains this proposed AD, the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) AD, the economic evaluation, any comments received, and other information. The street address for the Docket Operations Office (telephone 800-647-5527) is in the ADDRESSES section. Comments will be available in the AD docket shortly after receipt.

For service information identified in this proposed rule, contact Airbus Helicopters, 2701 N. Forum Drive, Grand Prairie, TX 75052; telephone (972) 641-0000 or (800) 232-0323; fax (972) 641-3775; or at http://www.airbushelicopters.com/techpub. You may review the referenced service information at the FAA, Office of the Regional Counsel, Southwest Region, 10101 Hillwood Pkwy, Room 6N-321, Fort Worth, Texas 76177.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Matt Fuller, Senior Aviation Safety Engineer, Safety Management Group, Rotorcraft Directorate, FAA, 10101 Hillwood Pkwy, Fort Worth, Texas 76177; telephone (817) 222-5110; email matthew.fuller@faa.gov.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Comments Invited

We invite you to participate in this rulemaking by submitting written comments, data, or views. We also invite comments relating to the economic, environmental, energy, or federalism impacts that might result from adopting the proposals in this document. The most helpful comments reference a specific portion of the proposal, explain the reason for any recommended change, and include supporting data. To ensure the docket does not contain duplicate comments, commenters should send only one copy of written comments, or if comments are filed electronically, commenters should submit only one time.

We will file in the docket all comments that we receive, as well as a report summarizing each substantive public contact with FAA personnel concerning this proposed rulemaking. Before acting on this proposal, we will consider all comments we receive on or before the closing date for comments. We will consider comments filed after the comment period has closed if it is possible to do so without incurring expense or delay. We may change this proposal in light of the comments we receive.

Discussion

EASA, which is the Technical Agent for the Member States of the European Union, issued EASA AD No. 2015-0042, dated March 9, 2015, to correct an unsafe condition for Airbus Helicopters Model BO105 LS A-3 helicopters.

Page 16101

EASA advises that life limits have been introduced for TT strap part number (P/N) 2604067 and P/N 117-14110 installed on the helicopter lifting system. During a revision of the Airworthiness Limitations section of the Model BO105LS A-3 maintenance manual, the life limit for the TT strap was inadvertently deleted. Accordingly, EASA issued AD No. 2015-0042 to correct this error. EASA AD No. 2015-0042 requires replacing TT straps upon reaching their life limit and entering the life limit into the aircraft maintenance manual. EASA states that failure to comply with the life limit could result in an unsafe condition.

FAA's Determination

These helicopters have been approved by the aviation authority of Germany and are approved for operation in the United States. Pursuant to our bilateral agreement with Germany, EASA, its technical representative, has notified us of the unsafe condition described in its AD. We are proposing this AD because we evaluated all known relevant information and determined that an unsafe condition is likely to exist or develop on other products of the same type design.

Related Service Information

Airbus Helicopters issued Alert Service Bulletin ASB BO105LS-10A-

013, Revision 0, dated March 9, 2015 (ASB). The ASB specifies adding a life limit for the TT strap P/N 2604067 or 117-14110 of 25,000 flights or 10 years, whichever occurs first, in the list of life-limited parts and corresponding log cards. The ASB also states TT straps that have exceeded the retirement time must be replaced and that only TT straps that have not exceeded the retirement time may be installed.

Proposed AD Requirements

This proposed AD would require, within 20 hours time-in-service:

Inspecting the Airworthiness Limitations section of the applicable maintenance manual or Instructions for Continued Airworthiness (ICA) and the component history card or equivalent record for each TT strap and determining whether those records specify a life limit of 25,000 flights or 10 years since the date of manufacture, whichever occurs first.

cir If the records do not specify a life limit for each TT strap or if they specify a different life limit than required, revising the Airworthiness Limitations section of the applicable maintenance manual or ICA by establishing a life limit of 25,000 flights or 10 years since date of manufacture, whichever occurs first.

cir Creating a component history card or equivalent record for each TT strap, if one does not exist, and recording a life limit of 25,000 flights or 10 years since date of manufacture, whichever occurs first.

Removing from service each TT strap that has reached or exceeded its life limit.

Differences Between This Proposed AD and the EASA AD

This proposed AD would require compliance within 20 hours TIS. The EASA AD allows 2 months to calculate the flight cycles or calendar time of each TT strap.

Costs of Compliance

We estimate that this proposed AD would affect 8 helicopters of U.S. Registry. Labor costs are estimated at $85 per hour. We estimate that it would take 2 work hours to inspect and revise the Airworthiness Limitations section and to calculate and record a life limit for the TT strap for a total cost of $170 per helicopter and $1,360 for the fleet. If a TT strap is replaced, we estimate it would take 8 work hours and $16,617 for required parts for a total cost of $17,297 per helicopter per TT strap.

Authority for This Rulemaking

Title 49 of the United States Code specifies the FAA's authority to issue rules on aviation safety. Subtitle I, section 106, describes the authority of the FAA Administrator. ``Subtitle VII: Aviation Programs,'' describes in more detail the scope of the Agency's authority.

We are issuing this rulemaking under the authority described in ``Subtitle VII, Part A, Subpart III, Section 44701: General requirements.'' Under that section, Congress charges the FAA with promoting safe flight of civil aircraft in air commerce by prescribing regulations for practices, methods, and procedures the Administrator finds necessary for safety in air commerce. This regulation is within the scope of that authority because it addresses an unsafe condition that is likely to exist or develop on products identified in this rulemaking action.

Regulatory Findings

We determined that this proposed AD would not have federalism implications under Executive Order 13132. This proposed AD would not have a substantial direct effect on the States, on the relationship between the national Government and the States, or on the distribution of power and responsibilities among the various levels of government.

For the reasons discussed, I certify this proposed regulation:

  1. Is not a ``significant regulatory action'' under Executive Order 12866;

  2. Is not a ``significant rule'' under the DOT Regulatory Policies and Procedures (44 FR 11034, February 26, 1979);

  3. Will not affect intrastate aviation in Alaska to the extent that it justifies making a regulatory distinction; and

  4. Will not have a significant economic impact, positive or negative, on a substantial number of small entities under the criteria of the Regulatory Flexibility Act.

    We prepared an economic evaluation of the estimated costs to comply with this proposed AD and placed it in the AD docket.

    List of Subjects in 14 CFR Part 39

    Air transportation, Aircraft, Aviation safety, Incorporation by reference, Safety.

    The Proposed Amendment

    Accordingly, under the authority delegated to me by the Administrator, the FAA proposes to amend 14 CFR part 39 as follows:

    PART 39--AIRWORTHINESS DIRECTIVES

    0

  5. The authority citation for part 39 continues to read as follows:

    Authority: 49 U.S.C. 106(g), 40113, 44701.

    Sec. 39.13 Amended

    0

  6. The FAA amends Sec. 39.13 by adding the following new airworthiness directive (AD):

    Airbus Helicopters Deutschland GmbH Helicopters: Docket No. FAA-

    2016-5247; Directorate Identifier 2015-SW-008-AD.

    (a) Applicability

    This AD applies to Model BO-105LS A-3 helicopters with a tension torsion (TT) strap part number (P/N) 2604067 or P/N 117-14110 installed, certificated in any category.

    (b) Unsafe Condition

    This AD defines the unsafe condition as a TT strap remaining in service beyond its fatigue life. This condition could result in failure of a TT strap and loss of control of a helicopter.

    (c) Comments Due Date

    We must receive comments by May 24, 2016.

    (d) Compliance

    You are responsible for performing each action required by this AD within the specified compliance time unless it has already been accomplished prior to that time.

    Page 16102

    (e) Required Actions

    Within 20 hours time-in-service:

    (1) Inspect the Airworthiness Limitations section of the applicable maintenance manual or Instructions for Continued Airworthiness (ICA) and the component history card or equivalent record for TT strap P/N 2604067 and P/N 117-14110. Determine whether those records specify a life limit of 25,000 flights or 10 years since the date of manufacture, whichever occurs first.

    (2) If the Airworthiness Limitations section of the applicable maintenance manual or ICA or the component history card or equivalent record do not specify a life limit for the TT strap, or if they specify a different life limit than in paragraph (e)(1), do the following:

    (i) Revise the Airworthiness Limitations section of the applicable maintenance manual or ICA by establishing a life limit of 25,000 flights or 10 years since date of manufacture, whichever occurs first, for each TT strap P/N 2604067 and P/N 117-14110 by making pen-and-ink changes or by inserting a copy of this AD into the Airworthiness Limitations section of the maintenance manual or the ICA. For purposes of this AD, a flight would be counted anytime the helicopter lifts off into the air and then lands again regardless of the duration of the landing and regardless of whether the engine is shut down.

    (ii) Create a component history card or equivalent record for each TT strap P/N 2604067 and P/N 117-14110, if one does not exist, and record a life limit of 25,000 flights or 10 years since date of manufacture, whichever occurs first.

    (3) Remove from service each TT strap that has reached or exceeded its life limit.

    (f) Special Flight Permit

    Special flight permits are prohibited.

    (g) Alternative Methods of Compliance (AMOCs)

    (1) The Manager, Safety Management Group, FAA, may approve AMOCs for this AD. Send your proposal to Matt Fuller, Senior Aviation Safety Engineer, Safety Management Group, Rotorcraft Directorate, FAA, 10101 Hillwood Pkwy, Fort Worth, Texas 76177; telephone (817) 222-5110; email 9-ASW-FTW-AMOC-Requests@faa.gov.

    (2) For operations conducted under a 14 CFR part 119 operating certificate or under 14 CFR part 91, subpart K, we suggest that you notify your principal inspector, or lacking a principal inspector, the manager of the local flight standards district office or certificate holding district office before operating any aircraft complying with this AD through an AMOC.

    (h) Additional Information

    (1) Airbus Helicopters Alert Service Bulletin ASB BO105LS-10A-

    013, Revision 0, dated March 9, 2015, which is not incorporated by reference, contains additional information about the subject of this AD. For service information identified in this AD, contact Airbus Helicopters, 2701 N. Forum Drive, Grand Prairie, TX 75052; telephone (972) 641-0000 or (800) 232-0323; fax (972) 641-3775; or at http://www.airbushelicopters.com/techpub. You may review the referenced service information at the FAA, Office of the Regional Counsel, Southwest Region, 10101 Hillwood Pkwy, Room 6N-321, Fort Worth, TX 76177.

    (2) The subject of this AD is addressed in European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) AD No. 2015-0042, dated March 9, 2015. You may view the EASA AD on the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov in the AD Docket.

    (i) Subject

    Joint Aircraft Service Component (JASC) Code: 6200 Main Rotor System.

    Issued in Fort Worth, Texas, on March 16, 2016.

    Scott A. Horn,

    Acting Manager, Rotorcraft Directorate, Aircraft Certification Service.

    FR Doc. 2016-06530 Filed 3-24-16; 8:45 am

    BILLING CODE 4910-13-P