Airworthiness Directives; Airbus Model A318-111 and A318-112 Airplanes and Model A319, A320, and A321 Airplanes, 3768-3771 [E7-1205]

Download as PDF 3768 Federal Register / Vol. 72, No. 17 / Friday, January 26, 2007 / Proposed Rules Maurice Bellonte, 31707 Blagnac, Cedex, France. The report must include the information specified in Appendix 01 of Airbus Service Bulletin A300–24–6097 or A310–24–2100, both dated March 3, 2006, as applicable. Under the provisions of the Paperwork Reduction Act (44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq.), the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) has approved the information collection requirements contained in this AD and has assigned OMB Control Number 2120–0056. (1) For each inspection done after the effective date of this AD: Send the report within 30 days after the inspection. (2) If an inspection was done before the effective date of this AD: Send the report within 30 days after the effective date of this AD. Optional Terminating Action (m) Replacement of the bracket feeder on the pylons terminates the requirements of this AD if the bracket feeder is replaced in accordance with Airbus Service Bulletin A300–54–6038, dated May 12, 2006 (for Model A300 B4–601, A300 B4–603, A300 B4–605R, and A300 C4–605R Variant F airplanes); or A310–54–2039, dated May 12, 2006 (for Model A310–204, A310–304, and A310–308 airplanes); as applicable. Alternative Methods of Compliance (AMOCs) (n)(1) The Manager, International Branch, ANM–116, has the authority to approve AMOCs for this AD, if requested in accordance with the procedures found in 14 CFR 39.19. (2) Before using any AMOC approved in accordance with § 39.19 on any airplane to which the AMOC applies, notify the appropriate principal inspector in the FAA Flight Standards Certificate Holding District Office. Related Information (o) EASA airworthiness directive 2006– 0155, dated June 1, 2006, also addresses the subject of this AD. Issued in Renton, Washington, on December 26, 2006. Ali Bahrami, Manager, Transport Airplane Directorate, Aircraft Certification Service. [FR Doc. E7–1207 Filed 1–25–07; 8:45 am] mstockstill on PROD1PC62 with PROPOSALS BILLING CODE 4910–13–P VerDate Aug<31>2005 15:24 Jan 25, 2007 Jkt 211001 DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Part 39 [Docket No. FAA–2007–27015; Directorate Identifier 2006–NM–169–AD] RIN 2120–AA64 Airworthiness Directives; Airbus Model A318–111 and A318–112 Airplanes and Model A319, A320, and A321 Airplanes Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), Department of Transportation (DOT). ACTION: Notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM). AGENCY: SUMMARY: The FAA proposes to supersede two existing airworthiness directives (ADs). One AD applies to all Airbus Model A319 and A320 airplanes and currently requires repetitive ultrasonic inspections to detect fatigue cracking in the wing/fuselage joint cruciform fittings, and corrective actions if necessary. The other AD applies to all Airbus Model A319, A320, and A321 airplanes and currently requires a revision to the Airworthiness Limitations section (ALS) of the Instructions for Continued Airworthiness (ICA). This proposed AD would require new revisions to the ALS of the ICA to incorporate service life limits for certain items and inspections to detect fatigue cracking, accidental damage, or corrosion in certain structures; and accomplishment of the repetitive ultrasonic inspections of the wing/fuselage joint cruciform fittings in accordance with the revised ALS of the ICA. This proposed AD would also add airplanes to the applicability. This proposed AD results from issuance of new and more restrictive service life limits and structural inspections based on fatigue testing and in-service findings. We are proposing this AD to detect and correct fatigue cracking, accidental damage, or corrosion in principal structural elements and to prevent failure of certain life limited parts, which could result in reduced structural integrity of the airplane. DATES: We must receive comments on this proposed AD by February 26, 2007. ADDRESSES: Use one of the following addresses to submit comments on this proposed AD. • DOT Docket Web site: Go to http://dms.dot.gov and follow the instructions for sending your comments electronically. • Government-wide rulemaking Web site: Go to http://www.regulations.gov PO 00000 Frm 00019 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 and follow the instructions for sending your comments electronically. • Mail: Docket Management Facility; U.S. Department of Transportation, 400 Seventh Street, SW., Nassif Building, Room PL–401, Washington, DC 20590. • Fax: (202) 493–2251. • Hand Delivery: Room PL–401 on the plaza level of the Nassif Building, 400 Seventh Street, SW., Washington, DC, between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. Contact Airbus, 1 Rond Point Maurice Bellonte, 31707 Blagnac Cedex, France, for service information identified in this proposed AD. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Tim Dulin, Aerospace Engineer, International Branch, ANM–116, FAA, Transport Airplane Directorate, 1601 Lind Avenue, SW., Renton, Washington 98057–3356; telephone (425) 227–2141; fax (425) 227–1149. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Comments Invited We invite you to submit any relevant written data, views, or arguments regarding this proposed AD. Send your comments to an address listed in the ADDRESSES section. Include the docket number ‘‘Docket No. FAA–2007–27015; Directorate Identifier 2006–NM–169– AD’’ at the beginning of your comments. We specifically invite comments on the overall regulatory, economic, environmental, and energy aspects of the proposed AD. We will consider all comments received by the closing date and may amend the proposed AD in light of those comments. We will post all comments we receive, without change, to http:// dms.dot.gov, including any personal information you provide. We will also post a report summarizing each substantive verbal contact with FAA personnel concerning this proposed AD. Using the search function of that Web site, anyone can find and read the comments in any of our dockets, including the name of the individual who sent the comment (or signed the comment on behalf of an association, business, labor union, etc.). You may review the DOT’s complete Privacy Act Statement in the Federal Register published on April 11, 2000 (65 FR 19477–78), or you may visit http:// dms.dot.gov. Examining the Docket You may examine the AD docket on the Internet at http://dms.dot.gov, or in person at the Docket Management Facility office between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. The Docket E:\FR\FM\26JAP1.SGM 26JAP1 3769 Federal Register / Vol. 72, No. 17 / Friday, January 26, 2007 / Proposed Rules Management Facility office (telephone (800) 647–5227) is located on the plaza level of the Nassif Building at the DOT street address stated in the ADDRESSES section. Comments will be available in the AD docket shortly after the Docket Management System receives them. mstockstill on PROD1PC62 with PROPOSALS Discussion On January 29, 2004, we issued AD 2004–03–06, amendment 39–13450 (69 FR 5909, February 9, 2004), for all Airbus Model A319 and A320 airplanes. That AD requires repetitive ultrasonic inspections to detect fatigue cracking in the wing/fuselage joint cruciform fittings, and corrective actions if necessary. That AD resulted from issuance of mandatory continuing airworthiness information by a foreign civil airworthiness authority. We issued that AD to detect and correct fatigue cracks on the wing/fuselage joint cruciform fittings, which could result in reduced structural integrity of the wing/ fuselage. On January 18, 2005, we issued AD 2005–02–09, amendment 39–13954 (70 FR 3871, January 27, 2005), for all Airbus Model A319, A320, and A321 airplanes. That AD requires a revision to the Airworthiness Limitations section (ALS) of the Instructions for Continued Airworthiness (ICA) to incorporate new and more restrictive service life limits for certain items, and new and more restrictive inspections to detect fatigue cracking, accidental damage, or corrosion in certain structures. That AD resulted from a revision to the Airbus A318/A319/A320/A321 Maintenance Planning Document (MPD) and Airworthiness Limitation Items (ALIs) document, which specify new or more restrictive compliance times for structural inspection and replacement actions. We issued that AD to ensure the continued structural integrity of these airplanes. Accomplishing certain actions in AD 2005–02–09 terminates the repetitive inspections of AD 2004– 03–06 for Model A319 and A320 airplanes. Actions Since Existing ADs Were Issued Since we issued AD 2004–03–06 and AD 2005–02–09, the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA), which is the airworthiness authority for the European Union, notified us that an unsafe condition may exist on all Airbus Model A318–111 and A318–112 airplanes and Model A319, A320, and A321 airplanes. The EASA advises that Airbus has issued new and more restrictive service life limits and structural inspections based upon fatigue testing and in-service findings. Fatigue cracking, accidental damage, or VerDate Aug<31>2005 15:24 Jan 25, 2007 Jkt 211001 corrosion in principal structural elements and failure of certain life limited parts, if not corrected, could result in reduced structural integrity of the airplane. The EASA also advises that Airbus has moved the service life limits given in sub-Section 9–1–2, ‘‘Life Limited Parts,’’ and sub-Section 9–1–3, ‘‘Demonstrated Fatigue Life Parts,’’ of the Airbus A318/A319/A320/A321 MPD into a new document titled, Airbus A318/A319/A320/A321 ALS Part 1— Safe Life Airworthiness Limitation Items. Also, Airbus has moved the structural significant items (SSIs) of subSection 9–2, ‘‘Airworthiness Limitation Items,’’ of the Airbus A318/A319/A320/ A321 MPD into a new document titled, Airbus A318/A319/A320/A321 ALS Part 2—Damage-Tolerant Airworthiness Limitation Items, which refers to Airbus A318/A319/A320/A321 Airworthiness Limitation Items, Document AI/SE–M4/ 95A.0252/96. Relevant Service Information Airbus has issued A318/A319/A320/ A321 ALS Part 1—Safe Life Airworthiness Limitation Items, dated February 28, 2006. Sub-part 1–2, ‘‘Life Limits,’’ and Sub-part 1–3, ‘‘Demonstrated Fatigue Lives,’’ of the ALS Part 1 document specify new and more restrictive service life limits for certain items. Airbus has also issued A318/A319/ A320/A321 ALS Part 2—DamageTolerant Airworthiness Limitation Items, dated February 28, 2006. The ALS Part 2 document refers to Airbus A318/A319/A320/A321 Airworthiness Limitation Items, Document AI/SE–M4/ 95A.0252/96, Issue 7, dated December 2005 (approved by the EASA on February 7, 2006), which specifies new and more restrictive inspections for SSIs. Accomplishment of the actions specified in these documents is intended to adequately address the identified unsafe condition. The EASA mandated the service information and issued airworthiness directive 2006– 0162, dated June 8, 2006; and airworthiness directive 2006–0165, dated June 13, 2006; to ensure the continued airworthiness of these airplanes in the European Union. FAA’s Determination and Requirements of the Proposed AD These airplane models are manufactured in France and are type certificated for operation in the United States under the provisions of section 21.29 of the Federal Aviation Regulations (14 CFR 21.29) and the applicable bilateral airworthiness PO 00000 Frm 00020 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 agreement. As described in FAA Order 8100.14A, ‘‘Interim Procedures for Working with the European Community on Airworthiness Certification and Continued Airworthiness,’’ dated August 12, 2005, the EASA has kept the FAA informed of the situation described above. We have examined the EASA’s findings, evaluated all pertinent information, and determined that AD action is necessary for airplanes of this type design that are certificated for operation in the United States. This proposed AD would supersede AD 2004–03–06. This proposed AD would also supersede AD 2005–02–09 and would retain the requirements of existing AD 2005–02–09. This proposed AD would also require revising the ALS of the ICA to incorporate service life limits for certain items and inspections to detect fatigue cracking, accidental damage, or corrosion in certain structures; and accomplishment of the repetitive ultrasonic inspections of the wing/fuselage joint cruciform fittings in accordance with the revised ALS of the ICA. Change to Existing AD This proposed AD would retain certain requirements of AD 2005–02–09. Since AD 2005–02–09 was issued, the AD format has been revised, and certain paragraphs have been rearranged. As a result, the corresponding paragraph identifiers have changed in this proposed AD, as listed in the following table: REVISED PARAGRAPH IDENTIFIERS Requirement in AD 2005–02–09 Paragraph (a) ............ Paragraph (b) ............ Corresponding requirement in this proposed AD Paragraph (f). Paragraph (g). Explanation of Change Made to Requirements of Existing AD Paragraphs (a) and (b) of AD 2005–02– 09 specify revising the ALS of the ICA using a method approved by either the ´ ´ FAA or the Direction Generale de l’Aviation Civile (DGAC) (or its delegated agent). The EASA has assumed responsibility for the airplane models that would be subject to this AD. Therefore, we have revised paragraphs (f) and (g) of this NPRM to specify revising the ALS of the ICA using a method approved by the FAA, the DGAC (or its delegated agent), or the EASA (or its delegated agent). E:\FR\FM\26JAP1.SGM 26JAP1 3770 Federal Register / Vol. 72, No. 17 / Friday, January 26, 2007 / Proposed Rules Clarification of Alternative Method of Compliance (AMOC) Paragraph approved AMOC on any airplane to which the AMOC applies. We have revised this action to clarify the appropriate procedure for notifying the principal inspector before using any Costs of Compliance The following table provides the estimated costs, at an average labor rate of $80 per hour, for U.S. operators to comply with this proposed AD. ESTIMATED COSTS Action Work hours ALS Revision (required by AD 2005–02–09) .................................................................. ALS Revision (new proposed action) .............................................................................. mstockstill on PROD1PC62 with PROPOSALS 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 have 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 above, I certify that the 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); and 3. 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 a regulatory evaluation of the estimated costs to comply with this proposed AD and placed it in the AD docket. See the ADDRESSES section VerDate Aug<31>2005 15:24 Jan 25, 2007 Jkt 211001 for a location to examine the regulatory evaluation. List of Subjects in 14 CFR Part 39 Air transportation, Aircraft, Aviation safety, 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 1. The authority citation for part 39 continues to read as follows: Authority: 49 U.S.C. 106(g), 40113, 44701. § 39.13 [Amended] 2. The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) amends § 39.13 by removing amendment 39–13450 (69 FR 5909, February 9, 2004) and amendment 39–13954 (70 FR 3871, January 27, 2005) and by adding the following new airworthiness directive (AD): Airbus: Docket No. FAA–2007–27015; Directorate Identifier 2006–NM–169–AD. Comments Due Date (a) The FAA must receive comments on this AD action by February 26, 2007. Affected ADs (b) This AD supersedes AD 2004–03–06 and AD 2005–02–09. Applicability (c) This AD applies to all Airbus Model A318–111, A318–112, A319, A320, and A321 airplanes, certificated in any category. Note 1: This AD requires revisions to certain operator maintenance documents to include new inspections. Compliance with these inspections is required by 14 CFR 91.403(c). For airplanes that have been previously modified, altered, or repaired in the areas addressed by these inspections, the operator may not be able to accomplish the inspections described in the revisions. In this situation, to comply with 14 CFR 91.403(c), the operator must request approval for an PO 00000 Frm 00021 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 Cost per airplane 1 1 $80 80 Number of U.S.-registered airplanes 720 720 Fleet cost $57,600 57,600 alternative method of compliance according to paragraph (l) of this AD. The request should include a description of changes to the required inspections that will ensure the continued damage tolerance of the affected structure. The FAA has provided guidance for this determination in Advisory Circular (AC) 25.1529–1. Unsafe Condition (d) This AD results from issuance of new and more restrictive service life limits and structural inspections based on fatigue testing and in-service findings. We are issuing this AD to detect and correct fatigue cracking, accidental damage, or corrosion in principal structural elements and to prevent failure of certain life limited parts, which could result in reduced structural integrity of the airplane. Compliance (e) You are responsible for having the actions required by this AD performed within the compliance times specified, unless the actions have already been done. Restatement of Requirements of AD 2005– 02–09 Revise Airworthiness Limitations Section (ALS) (f) For all Model A319, A320, and A321 airplanes: Within 6 months after March 3, 2005 (the effective date of AD 2005–02–09), revise the ALS of the Instructions for Continued Airworthiness in accordance with a method approved by the Manager, International Branch, ANM–116, Transport Airplane Directorate, FAA; or the Direction ´ ´ Generale de l’Aviation Civile (DGAC) (or its delegated agent); or the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) (or its delegated agent). One approved method of compliance is incorporating Airbus A318/A319/A320/ A321 Maintenance Planning Document (MPD), sub-Section 9–1–2, ‘‘Life Limited Parts,’’ and sub-Section 9–1–3, ‘‘Demonstrated Fatigue Life Parts,’’ both Revision 06, both dated June 13, 2003. Note 2: Airbus Service Information Letter 32–098, dated December 22, 2003, may be used as a source of service information for managing life limited and demonstrated fatigue life parts that were not previously tracked. (g) For all Model A319, A320, and A321 airplanes; except Model A319 airplanes on E:\FR\FM\26JAP1.SGM 26JAP1 Federal Register / Vol. 72, No. 17 / Friday, January 26, 2007 / Proposed Rules which Airbus Modifications 28238, 28162, and 28342 were incorporated during production: Within 6 months after March 3, 2005, revise the ALS of the Instructions for Continued Airworthiness in accordance with a method approved by the Manager, International Branch, ANM–116; or the DGAC (or its delegated agent); or the EASA (or its delegated agent). One approved method of compliance is incorporating both Airbus A318/A319/A320/A321 MPD, subSection 9–2, ‘‘Airworthiness Limitation Items,’’ Revision 06, dated June 13, 2003; and Airbus A318/A319/A320/A321 Airworthiness Limitation Items (ALIs), Document AI/SE-M4/95A.0252/96, Issue 6, dated May 15, 2003 (approved by the DGAC on July 15, 2003). accomplished, no alternative life limits, inspections, or inspection intervals may be used, except as provided by paragraphs (j) and (l) of this AD. New Requirements of This AD Related Information (m) EASA airworthiness directive 2006– 0162, dated June 8, 2006; and EASA airworthiness direction 2006–0165, dated June 13, 2006; also address the subject of this AD. Revise ALS To Incorporate Safe Life ALIs (h) For all airplanes: Within 3 months after the effective date of this AD, revise the ALS of the Instructions for Continued Airworthiness to incorporate Sub-part 1–2, ‘‘Life Limits,’’ and Sub-part 1–3, ‘‘Demonstrated Fatigue Lives,’’ of Airbus A318/A319/A320/A321 ALS Part 1—Safe Life Airworthiness Limitation Items, dated February 28, 2006 (hereafter referred to as ‘‘ALS Part 1’’). Accomplish the actions in ALS Part 1 at the times specified in ALS Part 1, except as provided by paragraph (j) of this AD. For Model A319, A320, and A321 airplanes, accomplishing the revision in this paragraph terminates the requirements of paragraph (f) of this AD. mstockstill on PROD1PC62 with PROPOSALS Revise ALS To Incorporate Damage-Tolerant ALIs (i) For all airplanes, except Model A319 airplanes on which Airbus Modifications 28238, 28162, and 28342 have been incorporated in production: Within 14 days after the effective date of this AD, revise the ALS of the Instructions for Continued Airworthiness to incorporate Airbus A318/ A319/A320/A321 Airworthiness Limitation Items, Document AI/SE–M4/95A.0252/96, Issue 7, dated December 2005 (approved by the EASA on February 7, 2006) (hereafter referred to as ‘‘Issue 7 of the ALI’’). Accomplish the actions in Issue 7 of the ALI at the times specified in Issue 7 of the ALI, except as provided by paragraph (j) of this AD. For Model A319, A320, and A321 airplanes, accomplishing the revision in this paragraph terminates the requirements of paragraph (g) of this AD. Grace Period for New or More Restrictive Actions (j) For any new of more restrictive life limit introduced with ALS Part 1, replace the part at the time specified in ALS Part 1 or within 6 months after the effective date of this AD, whichever is later. For any new or more restrictive inspection introduced with Issue 7 of the ALI, do the inspection at the time specified in Issue 7 of the ALI or within 6 months after the effective date of this AD, whichever is later. No Alternative Life Limits, Inspections, or Inspection Intervals (k) After the actions specified in paragraphs (h) and (i) of this AD have been VerDate Aug<31>2005 15:24 Jan 25, 2007 Jkt 211001 Alternative Methods of Compliance (AMOCs) (l)(1) The Manager, International Branch, ANM–116, Transport Airplane Directorate, FAA, has the authority to approve AMOCs for this AD, if requested in accordance with the procedures found in 14 CFR 39.19. (2) Before using any AMOC approved in accordance with § 39.19 on any airplane to which the AMOC applies, notify the appropriate principal inspector in the FAA Flight Standards Certificate Holding District Office. Issued in Renton, Washington, on January 12, 2007. Ali Bahrami, Manager, Transport Airplane Directorate, Aircraft Certification Service. [FR Doc. E7–1205 Filed 1–25–07; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910–13–P DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Part 39 [Docket No. FAA–2007–27013; Directorate Identifier 2006–NM–236–AD] RIN 2120–AA64 Airworthiness Directives; Airbus Model A330–200, A330–300, A340–200, and A340–300 Series Airplanes Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), Department of Transportation (DOT). ACTION: Notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM). AGENCY: SUMMARY: We propose to adopt a new airworthiness directive (AD) for the products listed above. This proposed AD results from mandatory continuing airworthiness information (MCAI) issued by an aviation authority of another country to identify and correct an unsafe condition on an aviation product. The MCAI describes the unsafe condition as fatigue damage with a crack propagation through the fastener line of the wing shroud box bottom panel, resulting in panel detachment and potential injuries to persons on the ground. The proposed AD would require actions that are intended to address the unsafe condition described in the MCAI. PO 00000 Frm 00022 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 3771 We must receive comments on this proposed AD by February 26, 2007. ADDRESSES: You may send comments by any of the following methods: • DOT Docket Web Site: Go to http:// dms.dot.gov and follow the instructions for sending your comments electronically. • Fax: (202) 493–2251. • Mail: Docket Management Facility, U.S. Department of Transportation, 400 Seventh Street, SW., Nassif Building, Room PL–401, Washington, DC 20590– 0001. • Hand Delivery: Room PL–401 on the plaza level of the Nassif Building, 400 Seventh Street, SW., Washington, DC, between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. • Federal eRulemaking Portal: http:// www.regulations.gov. Follow the instructions for submitting comments. DATES: Examining the AD Docket You may examine the AD docket on the Internet at http://dms.dot.gov; or in person at the Docket Management Facility between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. The AD docket contains this proposed AD, the regulatory evaluation, any comments received, and other information. The street address for the Docket Office (telephone (800) 647– 5227) is in the ADDRESSES section. Comments will be available in the AD docket shortly after receipt. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Tim Backman, Aerospace Engineer, International Branch, ANM–116, FAA, Transport Airplane Directorate, 1601 Lind Avenue, SW., Renton, Washington 98057–3356; telephone (425) 227–2797; fax (425) 227–1149. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Streamlined Issuance of AD The FAA is implementing a new process for streamlining the issuance of ADs related to MCAI. This streamlined process will allow us to adopt MCAI safety requirements in a more efficient manner and will reduce safety risks to the public. This process continues to follow all FAA AD issuance processes to meet legal, economic, Administrative Procedure Act, and Federal Register requirements. We also continue to meet our technical decision-making responsibilities to identify and correct unsafe conditions on U.S.-certificated products. This proposed AD references the MCAI and related service information that we considered in forming the engineering basis to correct the unsafe condition. The proposed AD contains text copied from the MCAI and for this E:\FR\FM\26JAP1.SGM 26JAP1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 72, Number 17 (Friday, January 26, 2007)]
[Proposed Rules]
[Pages 3768-3771]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: E7-1205]


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DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION

Federal Aviation Administration

14 CFR Part 39

[Docket No. FAA-2007-27015; Directorate Identifier 2006-NM-169-AD]
RIN 2120-AA64


Airworthiness Directives; Airbus Model A318-111 and A318-112 
Airplanes and Model A319, A320, and A321 Airplanes

AGENCY: Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), Department of 
Transportation (DOT).

ACTION: Notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM).

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

SUMMARY: The FAA proposes to supersede two existing airworthiness 
directives (ADs). One AD applies to all Airbus Model A319 and A320 
airplanes and currently requires repetitive ultrasonic inspections to 
detect fatigue cracking in the wing/fuselage joint cruciform fittings, 
and corrective actions if necessary. The other AD applies to all Airbus 
Model A319, A320, and A321 airplanes and currently requires a revision 
to the Airworthiness Limitations section (ALS) of the Instructions for 
Continued Airworthiness (ICA). This proposed AD would require new 
revisions to the ALS of the ICA to incorporate service life limits for 
certain items and inspections to detect fatigue cracking, accidental 
damage, or corrosion in certain structures; and accomplishment of the 
repetitive ultrasonic inspections of the wing/fuselage joint cruciform 
fittings in accordance with the revised ALS of the ICA. This proposed 
AD would also add airplanes to the applicability. This proposed AD 
results from issuance of new and more restrictive service life limits 
and structural inspections based on fatigue testing and in-service 
findings. We are proposing this AD to detect and correct fatigue 
cracking, accidental damage, or corrosion in principal structural 
elements and to prevent failure of certain life limited parts, which 
could result in reduced structural integrity of the airplane.

DATES: We must receive comments on this proposed AD by February 26, 
2007.

ADDRESSES: Use one of the following addresses to submit comments on 
this proposed AD.
     DOT Docket Web site: Go to http://dms.dot.gov and follow 
the instructions for sending your comments electronically.
     Government-wide rulemaking Web site: Go to http://
www.regulations.gov and follow the instructions for sending your 
comments electronically.
     Mail: Docket Management Facility; U.S. Department of 
Transportation, 400 Seventh Street, SW., Nassif Building, Room PL-401, 
Washington, DC 20590.
     Fax: (202) 493-2251.
     Hand Delivery: Room PL-401 on the plaza level of the 
Nassif Building, 400 Seventh Street, SW., Washington, DC, between 9 
a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays.
    Contact Airbus, 1 Rond Point Maurice Bellonte, 31707 Blagnac Cedex, 
France, for service information identified in this proposed AD.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Tim Dulin, Aerospace Engineer, 
International Branch, ANM-116, FAA, Transport Airplane Directorate, 
1601 Lind Avenue, SW., Renton, Washington 98057-3356; telephone (425) 
227-2141; fax (425) 227-1149.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Comments Invited

    We invite you to submit any relevant written data, views, or 
arguments regarding this proposed AD. Send your comments to an address 
listed in the ADDRESSES section. Include the docket number ``Docket No. 
FAA-2007-27015; Directorate Identifier 2006-NM-169-AD'' at the 
beginning of your comments. We specifically invite comments on the 
overall regulatory, economic, environmental, and energy aspects of the 
proposed AD. We will consider all comments received by the closing date 
and may amend the proposed AD in light of those comments.
    We will post all comments we receive, without change, to http://
dms.dot.gov, including any personal information you provide. We will 
also post a report summarizing each substantive verbal contact with FAA 
personnel concerning this proposed AD. Using the search function of 
that Web site, anyone can find and read the comments in any of our 
dockets, including the name of the individual who sent the comment (or 
signed the comment on behalf of an association, business, labor union, 
etc.). You may review the DOT's complete Privacy Act Statement in the 
Federal Register published on April 11, 2000 (65 FR 19477-78), or you 
may visit http://dms.dot.gov.

Examining the Docket

    You may examine the AD docket on the Internet at http://
dms.dot.gov, or in person at the Docket Management Facility office 
between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal 
holidays. The Docket

[[Page 3769]]

Management Facility office (telephone (800) 647-5227) is located on the 
plaza level of the Nassif Building at the DOT street address stated in 
the ADDRESSES section. Comments will be available in the AD docket 
shortly after the Docket Management System receives them.

Discussion

    On January 29, 2004, we issued AD 2004-03-06, amendment 39-13450 
(69 FR 5909, February 9, 2004), for all Airbus Model A319 and A320 
airplanes. That AD requires repetitive ultrasonic inspections to detect 
fatigue cracking in the wing/fuselage joint cruciform fittings, and 
corrective actions if necessary. That AD resulted from issuance of 
mandatory continuing airworthiness information by a foreign civil 
airworthiness authority. We issued that AD to detect and correct 
fatigue cracks on the wing/fuselage joint cruciform fittings, which 
could result in reduced structural integrity of the wing/fuselage.
    On January 18, 2005, we issued AD 2005-02-09, amendment 39-13954 
(70 FR 3871, January 27, 2005), for all Airbus Model A319, A320, and 
A321 airplanes. That AD requires a revision to the Airworthiness 
Limitations section (ALS) of the Instructions for Continued 
Airworthiness (ICA) to incorporate new and more restrictive service 
life limits for certain items, and new and more restrictive inspections 
to detect fatigue cracking, accidental damage, or corrosion in certain 
structures. That AD resulted from a revision to the Airbus A318/A319/
A320/A321 Maintenance Planning Document (MPD) and Airworthiness 
Limitation Items (ALIs) document, which specify new or more restrictive 
compliance times for structural inspection and replacement actions. We 
issued that AD to ensure the continued structural integrity of these 
airplanes. Accomplishing certain actions in AD 2005-02-09 terminates 
the repetitive inspections of AD 2004-03-06 for Model A319 and A320 
airplanes.

Actions Since Existing ADs Were Issued

    Since we issued AD 2004-03-06 and AD 2005-02-09, the European 
Aviation Safety Agency (EASA), which is the airworthiness authority for 
the European Union, notified us that an unsafe condition may exist on 
all Airbus Model A318-111 and A318-112 airplanes and Model A319, A320, 
and A321 airplanes. The EASA advises that Airbus has issued new and 
more restrictive service life limits and structural inspections based 
upon fatigue testing and in-service findings. Fatigue cracking, 
accidental damage, or corrosion in principal structural elements and 
failure of certain life limited parts, if not corrected, could result 
in reduced structural integrity of the airplane.
    The EASA also advises that Airbus has moved the service life limits 
given in sub-Section 9-1-2, ``Life Limited Parts,'' and sub-Section 9-
1-3, ``Demonstrated Fatigue Life Parts,'' of the Airbus A318/A319/A320/
A321 MPD into a new document titled, Airbus A318/A319/A320/A321 ALS 
Part 1--Safe Life Airworthiness Limitation Items. Also, Airbus has 
moved the structural significant items (SSIs) of sub-Section 9-2, 
``Airworthiness Limitation Items,'' of the Airbus A318/A319/A320/A321 
MPD into a new document titled, Airbus A318/A319/A320/A321 ALS Part 2--
Damage-Tolerant Airworthiness Limitation Items, which refers to Airbus 
A318/A319/A320/A321 Airworthiness Limitation Items, Document AI/SE-M4/
95A.0252/96.

Relevant Service Information

    Airbus has issued A318/A319/A320/A321 ALS Part 1--Safe Life 
Airworthiness Limitation Items, dated February 28, 2006. Sub-part 1-2, 
``Life Limits,'' and Sub-part 1-3, ``Demonstrated Fatigue Lives,'' of 
the ALS Part 1 document specify new and more restrictive service life 
limits for certain items.
    Airbus has also issued A318/A319/A320/A321 ALS Part 2--Damage-
Tolerant Airworthiness Limitation Items, dated February 28, 2006. The 
ALS Part 2 document refers to Airbus A318/A319/A320/A321 Airworthiness 
Limitation Items, Document AI/SE-M4/95A.0252/96, Issue 7, dated 
December 2005 (approved by the EASA on February 7, 2006), which 
specifies new and more restrictive inspections for SSIs.
    Accomplishment of the actions specified in these documents is 
intended to adequately address the identified unsafe condition. The 
EASA mandated the service information and issued airworthiness 
directive 2006-0162, dated June 8, 2006; and airworthiness directive 
2006-0165, dated June 13, 2006; to ensure the continued airworthiness 
of these airplanes in the European Union.

FAA's Determination and Requirements of the Proposed AD

    These airplane models are manufactured in France and are type 
certificated for operation in the United States under the provisions of 
section 21.29 of the Federal Aviation Regulations (14 CFR 21.29) and 
the applicable bilateral airworthiness agreement. As described in FAA 
Order 8100.14A, ``Interim Procedures for Working with the European 
Community on Airworthiness Certification and Continued Airworthiness,'' 
dated August 12, 2005, the EASA has kept the FAA informed of the 
situation described above. We have examined the EASA's findings, 
evaluated all pertinent information, and determined that AD action is 
necessary for airplanes of this type design that are certificated for 
operation in the United States.
    This proposed AD would supersede AD 2004-03-06. This proposed AD 
would also supersede AD 2005-02-09 and would retain the requirements of 
existing AD 2005-02-09. This proposed AD would also require revising 
the ALS of the ICA to incorporate service life limits for certain items 
and inspections to detect fatigue cracking, accidental damage, or 
corrosion in certain structures; and accomplishment of the repetitive 
ultrasonic inspections of the wing/fuselage joint cruciform fittings in 
accordance with the revised ALS of the ICA.

Change to Existing AD

    This proposed AD would retain certain requirements of AD 2005-02-
09. Since AD 2005-02-09 was issued, the AD format has been revised, and 
certain paragraphs have been rearranged. As a result, the corresponding 
paragraph identifiers have changed in this proposed AD, as listed in 
the following table:

                      Revised Paragraph Identifiers
------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                             Corresponding  requirement
       Requirement in AD 2005-02-09             in this  proposed AD
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Paragraph (a).............................  Paragraph (f).
Paragraph (b).............................  Paragraph (g).
------------------------------------------------------------------------

Explanation of Change Made to Requirements of Existing AD

    Paragraphs (a) and (b) of AD 2005-02-09 specify revising the ALS of 
the ICA using a method approved by either the FAA or the Direction 
G[eacute]n[eacute]rale de l'Aviation Civile (DGAC) (or its delegated 
agent). The EASA has assumed responsibility for the airplane models 
that would be subject to this AD. Therefore, we have revised paragraphs 
(f) and (g) of this NPRM to specify revising the ALS of the ICA using a 
method approved by the FAA, the DGAC (or its delegated agent), or the 
EASA (or its delegated agent).

[[Page 3770]]

Clarification of Alternative Method of Compliance (AMOC) Paragraph

    We have revised this action to clarify the appropriate procedure 
for notifying the principal inspector before using any approved AMOC on 
any airplane to which the AMOC applies.

Costs of Compliance

    The following table provides the estimated costs, at an average 
labor rate of $80 per hour, for U.S. operators to comply with this 
proposed AD.

                                                 Estimated Costs
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                                         Number of
                                                                             Cost per      U.S.-
                           Action                              Work hours    airplane    registered   Fleet cost
                                                                                         airplanes
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
ALS Revision (required by AD 2005-02-09)....................            1          $80          720      $57,600
ALS Revision (new proposed action)..........................            1           80          720       57,600
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

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 have 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 above, I certify that the 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); and
    3. 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 a regulatory evaluation of the estimated costs to 
comply with this proposed AD and placed it in the AD docket. See the 
ADDRESSES section for a location to examine the regulatory evaluation.

List of Subjects in 14 CFR Part 39

    Air transportation, Aircraft, Aviation safety, 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

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

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


Sec.  39.13  [Amended]

    2. The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) amends Sec.  39.13 by 
removing amendment 39-13450 (69 FR 5909, February 9, 2004) and 
amendment 39-13954 (70 FR 3871, January 27, 2005) and by adding the 
following new airworthiness directive (AD):

Airbus: Docket No. FAA-2007-27015; Directorate Identifier 2006-NM-
169-AD.

Comments Due Date

    (a) The FAA must receive comments on this AD action by February 
26, 2007.

Affected ADs

    (b) This AD supersedes AD 2004-03-06 and AD 2005-02-09.

Applicability

    (c) This AD applies to all Airbus Model A318-111, A318-112, 
A319, A320, and A321 airplanes, certificated in any category.

    Note 1: This AD requires revisions to certain operator 
maintenance documents to include new inspections. Compliance with 
these inspections is required by 14 CFR 91.403(c). For airplanes 
that have been previously modified, altered, or repaired in the 
areas addressed by these inspections, the operator may not be able 
to accomplish the inspections described in the revisions. In this 
situation, to comply with 14 CFR 91.403(c), the operator must 
request approval for an alternative method of compliance according 
to paragraph (l) of this AD. The request should include a 
description of changes to the required inspections that will ensure 
the continued damage tolerance of the affected structure. The FAA 
has provided guidance for this determination in Advisory Circular 
(AC) 25.1529-1.

Unsafe Condition

    (d) This AD results from issuance of new and more restrictive 
service life limits and structural inspections based on fatigue 
testing and in-service findings. We are issuing this AD to detect 
and correct fatigue cracking, accidental damage, or corrosion in 
principal structural elements and to prevent failure of certain life 
limited parts, which could result in reduced structural integrity of 
the airplane.

Compliance

    (e) You are responsible for having the actions required by this 
AD performed within the compliance times specified, unless the 
actions have already been done.

Restatement of Requirements of AD 2005-02-09

Revise Airworthiness Limitations Section (ALS)

    (f) For all Model A319, A320, and A321 airplanes: Within 6 
months after March 3, 2005 (the effective date of AD 2005-02-09), 
revise the ALS of the Instructions for Continued Airworthiness in 
accordance with a method approved by the Manager, International 
Branch, ANM-116, Transport Airplane Directorate, FAA; or the 
Direction G[eacute]n[eacute]rale de l'Aviation Civile (DGAC) (or its 
delegated agent); or the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) (or 
its delegated agent). One approved method of compliance is 
incorporating Airbus A318/A319/A320/A321 Maintenance Planning 
Document (MPD), sub-Section 9-1-2, ``Life Limited Parts,'' and sub-
Section 9-1-3, ``Demonstrated Fatigue Life Parts,'' both Revision 
06, both dated June 13, 2003.

    Note 2: Airbus Service Information Letter 32-098, dated December 
22, 2003, may be used as a source of service information for 
managing life limited and demonstrated fatigue life parts that were 
not previously tracked.

    (g) For all Model A319, A320, and A321 airplanes; except Model 
A319 airplanes on

[[Page 3771]]

which Airbus Modifications 28238, 28162, and 28342 were incorporated 
during production: Within 6 months after March 3, 2005, revise the 
ALS of the Instructions for Continued Airworthiness in accordance 
with a method approved by the Manager, International Branch, ANM-
116; or the DGAC (or its delegated agent); or the EASA (or its 
delegated agent). One approved method of compliance is incorporating 
both Airbus A318/A319/A320/A321 MPD, sub-Section 9-2, 
``Airworthiness Limitation Items,'' Revision 06, dated June 13, 
2003; and Airbus A318/A319/A320/A321 Airworthiness Limitation Items 
(ALIs), Document AI/SE-M4/95A.0252/96, Issue 6, dated May 15, 2003 
(approved by the DGAC on July 15, 2003).

New Requirements of This AD

Revise ALS To Incorporate Safe Life ALIs

    (h) For all airplanes: Within 3 months after the effective date 
of this AD, revise the ALS of the Instructions for Continued 
Airworthiness to incorporate Sub-part 1-2, ``Life Limits,'' and Sub-
part 1-3, ``Demonstrated Fatigue Lives,'' of Airbus A318/A319/A320/
A321 ALS Part 1--Safe Life Airworthiness Limitation Items, dated 
February 28, 2006 (hereafter referred to as ``ALS Part 1''). 
Accomplish the actions in ALS Part 1 at the times specified in ALS 
Part 1, except as provided by paragraph (j) of this AD. For Model 
A319, A320, and A321 airplanes, accomplishing the revision in this 
paragraph terminates the requirements of paragraph (f) of this AD.

Revise ALS To Incorporate Damage-Tolerant ALIs

    (i) For all airplanes, except Model A319 airplanes on which 
Airbus Modifications 28238, 28162, and 28342 have been incorporated 
in production: Within 14 days after the effective date of this AD, 
revise the ALS of the Instructions for Continued Airworthiness to 
incorporate Airbus A318/A319/A320/A321 Airworthiness Limitation 
Items, Document AI/SE-M4/95A.0252/96, Issue 7, dated December 2005 
(approved by the EASA on February 7, 2006) (hereafter referred to as 
``Issue 7 of the ALI''). Accomplish the actions in Issue 7 of the 
ALI at the times specified in Issue 7 of the ALI, except as provided 
by paragraph (j) of this AD. For Model A319, A320, and A321 
airplanes, accomplishing the revision in this paragraph terminates 
the requirements of paragraph (g) of this AD.

Grace Period for New or More Restrictive Actions

    (j) For any new of more restrictive life limit introduced with 
ALS Part 1, replace the part at the time specified in ALS Part 1 or 
within 6 months after the effective date of this AD, whichever is 
later. For any new or more restrictive inspection introduced with 
Issue 7 of the ALI, do the inspection at the time specified in Issue 
7 of the ALI or within 6 months after the effective date of this AD, 
whichever is later.

No Alternative Life Limits, Inspections, or Inspection Intervals

    (k) After the actions specified in paragraphs (h) and (i) of 
this AD have been accomplished, no alternative life limits, 
inspections, or inspection intervals may be used, except as provided 
by paragraphs (j) and (l) of this AD.

Alternative Methods of Compliance (AMOCs)

    (l)(1) The Manager, International Branch, ANM-116, Transport 
Airplane Directorate, FAA, has the authority to approve AMOCs for 
this AD, if requested in accordance with the procedures found in 14 
CFR 39.19.
    (2) Before using any AMOC approved in accordance with Sec.  
39.19 on any airplane to which the AMOC applies, notify the 
appropriate principal inspector in the FAA Flight Standards 
Certificate Holding District Office.

Related Information

    (m) EASA airworthiness directive 2006-0162, dated June 8, 2006; 
and EASA airworthiness direction 2006-0165, dated June 13, 2006; 
also address the subject of this AD.

    Issued in Renton, Washington, on January 12, 2007.
Ali Bahrami,
Manager, Transport Airplane Directorate, Aircraft Certification 
Service.
 [FR Doc. E7-1205 Filed 1-25-07; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4910-13-P