Airworthiness Directives; Aeronautical Accessories, Inc., High Landing Gear Aft Crosstube Assembly, 37768-37770 [2012-15286]

Download as PDF 37768 Federal Register / Vol. 77, No. 122 / Monday, June 25, 2012 / Rules and Regulations Issued in Renton, Washington, on June 11, 2012. Kalene C. Yanamura, Acting Manager, Transport Airplane Directorate, Aircraft Certification Service. [FR Doc. 2012–14935 Filed 6–22–12; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910–13–P DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Part 39 [Docket No. FAA–2012–0083; Directorate Identifier 2010–SW–022–AD; Amendment 39–17077; AD 2012–11–13] RIN 2120–AA64 Airworthiness Directives; Aeronautical Accessories, Inc., High Landing Gear Aft Crosstube Assembly Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT. ACTION: Final rule. AGENCY: We are adopting a new airworthiness directive (AD) for the Aeronautical Accessories, Inc. (AAI), High Landing Gear Aft Crosstube Assembly (aft crosstube) installed on certain Bell Helicopter Textron, Inc. (Bell) and Agusta S.p.A. (Agusta) model helicopters as an approved Bell part installed during production or based on a Supplemental Type Certificate (STC). This AD requires certain recurring visual, dimensional, and fluorescent penetrant inspections of each aft crosstube, and replacing any cracked crosstube. This AD also requires establishing a life limit and creating a component history card or equivalent record for one of the affected partnumbered aft crosstubes. This AD was prompted by three reports of failed crosstubes because of cracks. The actions are intended to prevent failure of a crosstube, collapse of the landing gear, and subsequent loss of control of the helicopter. DATES: This AD is effective July 30, 2012. The Director of the Federal Register approved the incorporation by reference of a certain publication listed in this AD as of July 30, 2012. ADDRESSES: For service information identified in this AD, contact Aeronautical Accessories, Inc., P.O. Box 3689, Bristol, Tennessee 37625–3689, telephone (423) 538–5151 or 1–800– 251–7094, fax (423) 538–8469 or at http://www.aero-access.com. You may also get service information from Bell Helicopter Textron, Inc., P.O. Box 482, Fort Worth, TX 76101, telephone (817) erowe on DSK2VPTVN1PROD with RULES SUMMARY: VerDate Mar<15>2010 14:43 Jun 22, 2012 Jkt 226001 280–3391, fax (817) 280–6466, or at http://www.bellcustomer.com/files. You may review a copy of the referenced service information at the FAA, Office of the Regional Counsel, Southwest Region, 2601 Meacham Blvd., Room 663, Fort Worth, Texas 76137. Examining the AD Docket: You may examine the AD docket on the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov 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 AD, any incorporated-by-reference service information, the economic evaluation, any comments received, and other information. The street address for the Docket Operations Office (phone: 800– 647–5527) is U.S. Department of Transportation, Docket Operations Office, M–30, West Building Ground Floor, Room W12–140, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., Washington, DC 20590. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Martin R. Crane, Aviation Safety Engineer, Rotorcraft Directorate, Rotorcraft Certification Office, 2601 Meacham Blvd., Fort Worth, Texas 76137, telephone (817) 222–5170, email martin.r.crane@faa.gov. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Discussion On Feb. 3, 2012, at 77 FR 5420, the Federal Register published our Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM), which proposed to amend 14 CFR part 39 to include an AD that would apply to aft crosstube part number (P/N) 412–321– 104 and P/N 412–321–304, installed on Agusta Model AB412 and AB412EP and Bell Model 412, 412CF, and 412EP helicopters. The NPRM proposed to require certain recurring visual, dimensional, and fluorescent penetrant inspections of each aft crosstube. If there is a crack, the NPRM proposed to require, before further flight, replacing any cracked aft crosstube with an airworthy aft crosstube. The NPRM also proposed to require establishing a life limit for one of the affected partnumbered aft crosstubes (as the later part-numbered aft crosstube already has limits established) and creating a component history card or equivalent record for aft crosstube part number (P/N) 412–321–304. The proposed requirements were intended to prevent failure of a crosstube, collapse of the landing gear, and subsequent loss of control of the helicopter. Comments We gave the public the opportunity to participate in developing this AD, but we did not receive any comments on the NPRM. PO 00000 Frm 00018 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 FAA’s Determination We have reviewed the relevant information and determined that an unsafe condition exists and is likely to exist or develop on other products of the same type design and that air safety and the public interest require adopting the AD requirements as proposed except for minor editorial changes. These minor editorial changes are consistent with the intent of the proposals in the NPRM and will not increase the economic burden on any operator nor increase the scope of the AD. Related Service Information We have reviewed AAI Alert Service Bulletin (ASB) No. AA–07109, dated April 3, 2008, which specifies recurring inspections and maintenance of each aft crosstube, P/N 412–321–104, installed as an approved part by Bell during production, and P/N 412–321–304, installed under STC SR01052AT, on Bell Model 412, 412EP, and 412CF and Agusta Model AB412 and AB412EP helicopters. This ASB specifies establishing a high aft crosstube, P/N 412–321–304, ‘‘takeoff/landing’’ life limit of 20,000. Also, this ASB specifies that operators should follow helicopter towing instructions to prevent crosstube damage or failure as a result of ground handling or towing. We have also reviewed Bell ASB No. 412–08–129, dated May 12, 2008, for Bell Model 412 and 412EP helicopters, serial numbers 33001 through 33213, 36001 and subsequent, with an aft crosstube P/N 412–321–104 installed. Bell issued its ASB ‘‘to achieve complete distribution of AA–07109 vendor bulletin to the current affected model distribution list.’’ Costs of Compliance We estimate that this AD will affect 115 helicopters of U.S. Registry. We also estimate that the required actions will take about: • 1 hour to create a component history card or equivalent record and determine and record the number of accumulated takeoffs and landings for each affected aft crosstube; • 3 hours to prepare the area for a visual inspection; • 1⁄2 hour to do the repetitive visual inspections, assuming 14 repetitive visual inspections per year; • 1 hour to do a dimensional inspection of the skid gear, assuming 3 inspections per year; • 24 hours to prepare and fluorescent penetrant inspect the aft crosstube, assuming 2 inspections per year; and • 10 hours to replace an aft crosstube, if necessary, assuming 3 aft crosstubes are replaced. E:\FR\FM\25JNR1.SGM 25JNR1 Federal Register / Vol. 77, No. 122 / Monday, June 25, 2012 / Rules and Regulations The average labor rate is $85 per work hour. Required parts will cost about $9,315 per aft crosstube. Based on these figures, we estimate the total cost impact of this AD on U.S. operators to be $636,545. 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 This AD will not have federalism implications under Executive Order 13132. This AD will 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 this AD: (1) Is not a ‘‘significant regulatory action’’ under Executive Order 12866; (2) Is not a ‘‘significant rule’’ under 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 AD and placed it in the AD docket. erowe on DSK2VPTVN1PROD with RULES List of Subjects in 14 CFR Part 39 Air transportation, Aircraft, Aviation safety, Incorporation by reference, Safety. Adoption of the Amendment Accordingly, under the authority delegated to me by the Administrator, VerDate Mar<15>2010 14:43 Jun 22, 2012 Jkt 226001 the FAA amends 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 FAA amends § 39.13 by adding the following new airworthiness directive (AD): ■ 2012–11–13 Aeronautical Accessories, Inc.: Amendment 39–17077; Docket No. FAA–2012–0083; Directorate Identifier 2010–SW–022–AD. (a) Applicability This AD applies to High Landing Gear Aft Crosstube Assembly (aft crosstube) part number (P/N) 412–321–104 and P/N 412– 321–304, installed on Agusta S.p.A. Model AB412 and AB412EP and Bell Helicopter Textron, Inc., Model 412, 412CF, and 412EP helicopters, certificated in any category. (b) Unsafe Condition This AD defines the unsafe condition as cracked aft crosstube. This condition could result in collapse of the landing gear, and subsequent loss of control of the helicopter. (c) Effective Date This AD becomes effective July 30, 2012. (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. (e) Required Actions (1) Within 50 hours time-in-service (TIS) establish a life limit of 20,000 takeoffs and landings for each aft crosstube P/N 412–321– 304. For the purposes of this AD, a takeoff and landing is defined as the cycle from when the helicopter gets light on the skids (takeoff) unloading the aft crosstube and then settles on the skids again (landing) reloading the aft crosstubes. Either the number of landings or takeoffs may be counted. (i) Create a component history card or equivalent record. (ii) Determine and record on the history card or equivalent record the total number of takeoffs and landings for each aft crosstube. If the takeoff and landing information is unavailable, estimate the number by multiplying the airframe hours by 10. (2) Within the next 450 takeoffs and landings, if an aft crosstube has reached 20,000 or more takeoffs and landings, replace it with an airworthy aft crosstube. (3) Before reaching 2,500 takeoffs and landings or for an aft crosstube with 2,500 or more takeoffs and landings, within 50 hours TIS or within the next 250 takeoffs and landings, whichever occurs first, prepare the aft crosstube inspection areas as depicted in Figure 1 of Aeronautical Accessories, Inc. (AAI), Alert Service Bulletin No. AA–07109, dated April 3, 2008 (ASB), by following the PO 00000 Frm 00019 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 37769 Accomplishment Instructions, Part B, paragraphs 1 through 4, of the ASB. Using a 10X or higher magnifying glass, inspect the prepared areas of each aft crosstube for a crack. If there is a crack, before further flight, replace the cracked aft crosstube with an airworthy aft crosstube. If there are no cracks, after completing the aft crosstube inspection, prime and paint the inspection area by following the Accomplishment Instructions, Part B, paragraphs 6 and 7, of the ASB. (4) Thereafter, at intervals not to exceed 450 takeoffs and landings, clean the inspection area. Using a 10X or higher magnifying glass, inspect the clear-coated area of the aft crosstube for a crack. (5) If there is a crack, before further flight, replace the cracked aft crosstube with an airworthy aft crosstube. (6) Within 30 days or before reaching 2,500 takeoffs and landings, whichever occurs later, and thereafter at intervals not to exceed 2,500 takeoffs and landings or 12 months, whichever occurs first, determine the horizontal deflection of each aft crosstube from the centerline of the helicopter (BL 0.0) to the outside of the skid tubes by following the Accomplishment Instructions, Part D, paragraphs 1 through 3, of the ASB. If the measured aft crosstube horizontal deflection depicted in Figure 2 of the ASB is less than 57 inches (1,448 mm) or greater than 59 inches (1,499 mm), replace the aft crosstube with an airworthy aft crosstube. (7) Within 3 months or on or before reaching 7,500 takeoffs and landings, whichever occurs later, and thereafter at intervals not to exceed 5,000 takeoffs and landings: (i) Remove the aft crosstube assembly by removing the aft crosstube support beam assembly, P/N 604–030–001, and both aft crosstube clamp assemblies, P/N 604–027– 002. (ii) Remove paint and sealant from the aft crosstube outboard of the upper center support to top of saddles, both sides, as depicted in Figure 3 of the ASB. (iii) Fluorescent penetrant inspect each aft crosstube outboard of the upper center support as depicted in Figure 3 of the ASB for a crack. (iv) If there is a crack, before further flight, replace the cracked aft crosstube with an airworthy aft crosstube. (8) Revise the helicopter Airworthiness Limitations section of the applicable maintenance manuals or the Instructions for Continued Airworthiness (ICA) by establishing a new retirement life of 20,000 takeoff and landings for aft crosstube P/N 412–321–304 by making pen and ink changes or inserting a copy of this AD into the maintenance manual or the ICAs. (f) Alternative Methods of Compliance (AMOCs) (1) The Manager, Rotorcraft Certification Office, FAA, may approve AMOCs for this AD. Send your proposal to: Martin R. Crane, Aviation Safety Engineer, Rotorcraft Directorate, Rotorcraft Certification Office, 2601 Meacham Blvd., Fort Worth, Texas 76137, telephone (817) 222–5170, email martin.r.crane@faa.gov. (2) For operations conducted under a 14 CFR part 119 operating certificate or under E:\FR\FM\25JNR1.SGM 25JNR1 37770 Federal Register / Vol. 77, No. 122 / Monday, June 25, 2012 / Rules and Regulations 14 CFR part 119, 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. (g) Additional Information The FAA-accepted AAI Instructions for Continued Airworthiness Report Number AA–01136, and the Bell Helicopter Textron Alert Service Bulletin No. 412–08–129, dated May 12, 2008, which are not incorporated by reference, contain additional information about inspecting the aft crosstube for a crack. For the AAI service information, contact Aeronautical Accessories, Inc., P.O. Box 3689, Bristol, Tennessee 37625–3689, telephone (423) 538–5151 or 1–800–251– 7094, fax (423) 538–8469, or at http:// www.aero-access.com. For the Bell Helicopter Textron service information, contact Bell Helicopter Textron, Inc., P.O. Box 482, Fort Worth, TX 76101, telephone (817) 280–3391, fax (817) 280–6466, or at http://www.bellcustomer.com/files. (h) Subject Joint Aircraft Service Component (JASC) Code: 32: Landing Gear. (i) Material Incorporated by Reference erowe on DSK2VPTVN1PROD with RULES (1) The Director of the Federal Register approved the incorporation by reference (IBR) of the following service information under 5 U.S.C. 552(a) and 1 CFR part 51. (2) You must use the following service information to do the actions required by this AD, unless the AD specifies otherwise. (3) The following service information was approved for IBR on July 10, 2012. (i) Aeronautical Accessories, Inc., Alert Service Bulletin No. AA–07109, dated April 3, 2008. (4) For this service information, contact Aeronautical Accessories, Inc., P.O. Box 3689, Bristol, Tennessee 37625–3689, telephone (423) 538–5151 or 1–800–251– 7094, fax (423) 538–8469, or at http://www. aero-access.com. (5) You may review a copy of this referenced service information at the FAA, Office of the Regional Counsel, Southwest Region, 2601 Meacham Blvd., Room 663, Fort Worth, Texas 76137 or at the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA). For information on the availability of this material at NARA, call (202) 741– 6030, or go to: http://www.archives.gov/ federal_register/code_of_federal_regulations/ ibr_locations.html. Issued in Fort Worth, Texas, on May 25, 2012. Lance T. Gant, Acting Manager, Rotorcraft Directorate, Aircraft Certification Service. [FR Doc. 2012–15286 Filed 6–22–12; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910–13–P VerDate Mar<15>2010 14:43 Jun 22, 2012 Jkt 226001 DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Part 39 [Docket No. FAA–2012–0035; Directorate Identifier 2011–NM–178–AD; Amendment 39–17094; AD 2012–12–14] RIN 2120–AA64 Airworthiness Directives; The Boeing Company Airplanes Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT. ACTION: Final rule. AGENCY: We are adopting a new airworthiness directive (AD) for certain The Boeing Company Model 767–200 and –300 series airplanes. This AD was prompted by reports of fatigue cracking on the lower main sill inner chord of the hatch opening of the overwing emergency exit. This AD requires repetitive inspections for cracking, corrosion damage, and any other irregularity of the lower main sill inner chord and surrounding structure, and repair if necessary. We are issuing this AD to detect and correct fatigue cracking on the lower main sill inner chord of the hatch opening of the overwing emergency exit, which could result in reduced structural integrity of the hatch opening of the overwing emergency exit and consequent rapid decompression of the airplane. DATES: This AD is effective July 30, 2012. The Director of the Federal Register approved the incorporation by reference of a certain publication listed in the AD as of July 30, 2012. ADDRESSES: For service information identified in this AD, contact Boeing Commercial Airplanes, Attention: Data & Services Management, P.O. Box 3707, MC 2H–65, Seattle, Washington 98124– 2207; telephone 206–544–5000, extension 1; fax 206–766–5680; email me.boecom@boeing.com; Internet https://www.myboeingfleet.com. You may review copies of the referenced service information at the FAA, Transport Airplane Directorate, 1601 Lind Avenue SW., Renton, Washington. For information on the availability of this material at the FAA, call 425–227– 1221. SUMMARY: Examining the AD Docket You may examine the AD docket on the Internet at http:// www.regulations.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 PO 00000 Frm 00020 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 docket contains this AD, the regulatory evaluation, any comments received, and other information. The address for the Docket Office (phone: 800–647–5527) is Document Management Facility, U.S. Department of Transportation, Docket Operations, M–30, West Building Ground Floor, Room W12–140, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., Washington, DC 20590. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Berhane Alazar, Aerospace Engineer, Airframe Branch, ANM–120S, FAA, Seattle Aircraft Certification Office, 1601 Lind Avenue SW., Renton, Washington 98057–3356; phone: 425– 917–6577; fax: 425–917–6590; email: berhane.alazar@faa.gov. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Discussion We issued a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) to amend 14 CFR part 39 to include an AD that would apply to the specified products. That NPRM published in the Federal Register on January 23, 2012 (77 FR 3187). That NPRM proposed to require repetitive inspections for cracking, corrosion damage, and any other irregularity of the lower main sill inner chord and surrounding structure, and repair if necessary. Comments We gave the public the opportunity to participate in developing this AD. The following presents the comments received on the proposal (77 FR 3187, January 23, 2012) and the FAA’s response to each comment. Request To Clarify Terminating Action and Post-Repair Inspection Program Boeing requested that we revise the wording in paragraph (g) of the NPRM (77 FR 3187, January 23, 2012) to clarify that the AD terminates only the repetitive inspections required by the NPRM. Boeing also stated that the inspection area designated in the NPRM may be subject to other repetitive inspections following repairs done per another AD. All Nippon Airways (ANA) requested that we confirm that the post-repair inspection program is not mandatory. Delta Air Lines (Delta) requested that the NPRM (77 FR 3187, January 23, 2012) be revised to include the use of the ‘‘proactive’’ doubler installations as a terminating action. Delta stated that paragraph (g) of the NPRM authorizes only the on-condition repair as a terminating action. Delta requested that we include a separate paragraph to define the terminating action provisions. E:\FR\FM\25JNR1.SGM 25JNR1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 77, Number 122 (Monday, June 25, 2012)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Pages 37768-37770]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2012-15286]


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DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION

Federal Aviation Administration

14 CFR Part 39

[Docket No. FAA-2012-0083; Directorate Identifier 2010-SW-022-AD; 
Amendment 39-17077; AD 2012-11-13]
RIN 2120-AA64


Airworthiness Directives; Aeronautical Accessories, Inc., High 
Landing Gear Aft Crosstube Assembly

AGENCY: Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT.

ACTION: Final rule.

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

SUMMARY: We are adopting a new airworthiness directive (AD) for the 
Aeronautical Accessories, Inc. (AAI), High Landing Gear Aft Crosstube 
Assembly (aft crosstube) installed on certain Bell Helicopter Textron, 
Inc. (Bell) and Agusta S.p.A. (Agusta) model helicopters as an approved 
Bell part installed during production or based on a Supplemental Type 
Certificate (STC). This AD requires certain recurring visual, 
dimensional, and fluorescent penetrant inspections of each aft 
crosstube, and replacing any cracked crosstube. This AD also requires 
establishing a life limit and creating a component history card or 
equivalent record for one of the affected part-numbered aft crosstubes. 
This AD was prompted by three reports of failed crosstubes because of 
cracks. The actions are intended to prevent failure of a crosstube, 
collapse of the landing gear, and subsequent loss of control of the 
helicopter.

DATES: This AD is effective July 30, 2012.
    The Director of the Federal Register approved the incorporation by 
reference of a certain publication listed in this AD as of July 30, 
2012.

ADDRESSES: For service information identified in this AD, contact 
Aeronautical Accessories, Inc., P.O. Box 3689, Bristol, Tennessee 
37625-3689, telephone (423) 538-5151 or 1-800-251-7094, fax (423) 538-
8469 or at http://www.aero-access.com. You may also get service 
information from Bell Helicopter Textron, Inc., P.O. Box 482, Fort 
Worth, TX 76101, telephone (817) 280-3391, fax (817) 280-6466, or at 
http://www.bellcustomer.com/files. You may review a copy of the 
referenced service information at the FAA, Office of the Regional 
Counsel, Southwest Region, 2601 Meacham Blvd., Room 663, Fort Worth, 
Texas 76137.
    Examining the AD Docket: You may examine the AD docket on the 
Internet at http://www.regulations.gov 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 AD, any 
incorporated-by-reference service information, the economic evaluation, 
any comments received, and other information. The street address for 
the Docket Operations Office (phone: 800-647-5527) is U.S. Department 
of Transportation, Docket Operations Office, M-30, West Building Ground 
Floor, Room W12-140, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., Washington, DC 20590.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Martin R. Crane, Aviation Safety 
Engineer, Rotorcraft Directorate, Rotorcraft Certification Office, 2601 
Meacham Blvd., Fort Worth, Texas 76137, telephone (817) 222-5170, email 
martin.r.crane@faa.gov.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Discussion

    On Feb. 3, 2012, at 77 FR 5420, the Federal Register published our 
Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM), which proposed to amend 14 CFR 
part 39 to include an AD that would apply to aft crosstube part number 
(P/N) 412-321-104 and P/N 412-321-304, installed on Agusta Model AB412 
and AB412EP and Bell Model 412, 412CF, and 412EP helicopters. The NPRM 
proposed to require certain recurring visual, dimensional, and 
fluorescent penetrant inspections of each aft crosstube. If there is a 
crack, the NPRM proposed to require, before further flight, replacing 
any cracked aft crosstube with an airworthy aft crosstube. The NPRM 
also proposed to require establishing a life limit for one of the 
affected part-numbered aft crosstubes (as the later part-numbered aft 
crosstube already has limits established) and creating a component 
history card or equivalent record for aft crosstube part number (P/N) 
412-321-304. The proposed requirements were intended to prevent failure 
of a crosstube, collapse of the landing gear, and subsequent loss of 
control of the helicopter.

Comments

    We gave the public the opportunity to participate in developing 
this AD, but we did not receive any comments on the NPRM.

FAA's Determination

    We have reviewed the relevant information and determined that an 
unsafe condition exists and is likely to exist or develop on other 
products of the same type design and that air safety and the public 
interest require adopting the AD requirements as proposed except for 
minor editorial changes. These minor editorial changes are consistent 
with the intent of the proposals in the NPRM and will not increase the 
economic burden on any operator nor increase the scope of the AD.

Related Service Information

    We have reviewed AAI Alert Service Bulletin (ASB) No. AA-07109, 
dated April 3, 2008, which specifies recurring inspections and 
maintenance of each aft crosstube, P/N 412-321-104, installed as an 
approved part by Bell during production, and P/N 412-321-304, installed 
under STC SR01052AT, on Bell Model 412, 412EP, and 412CF and Agusta 
Model AB412 and AB412EP helicopters. This ASB specifies establishing a 
high aft crosstube, P/N 412-321-304, ``takeoff/landing'' life limit of 
20,000. Also, this ASB specifies that operators should follow 
helicopter towing instructions to prevent crosstube damage or failure 
as a result of ground handling or towing.
    We have also reviewed Bell ASB No. 412-08-129, dated May 12, 2008, 
for Bell Model 412 and 412EP helicopters, serial numbers 33001 through 
33213, 36001 and subsequent, with an aft crosstube P/N 412-321-104 
installed. Bell issued its ASB ``to achieve complete distribution of 
AA-07109 vendor bulletin to the current affected model distribution 
list.''

Costs of Compliance

    We estimate that this AD will affect 115 helicopters of U.S. 
Registry.
    We also estimate that the required actions will take about:
     1 hour to create a component history card or equivalent 
record and determine and record the number of accumulated takeoffs and 
landings for each affected aft crosstube;
     3 hours to prepare the area for a visual inspection;
     \1/2\ hour to do the repetitive visual inspections, 
assuming 14 repetitive visual inspections per year;
     1 hour to do a dimensional inspection of the skid gear, 
assuming 3 inspections per year;
     24 hours to prepare and fluorescent penetrant inspect the 
aft crosstube, assuming 2 inspections per year; and
     10 hours to replace an aft crosstube, if necessary, 
assuming 3 aft crosstubes are replaced.

[[Page 37769]]

    The average labor rate is $85 per work hour. Required parts will 
cost about $9,315 per aft crosstube. Based on these figures, we 
estimate the total cost impact of this AD on U.S. operators to be 
$636,545.

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

    This AD will not have federalism implications under Executive Order 
13132. This AD will 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 this AD:
    (1) Is not a ``significant regulatory action'' under Executive 
Order 12866;
    (2) Is not a ``significant rule'' under 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 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.

Adoption of the Amendment

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

PART 39--AIRWORTHINESS DIRECTIVES

0
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]

0
2. The FAA amends Sec.  39.13 by adding the following new airworthiness 
directive (AD):

2012-11-13 Aeronautical Accessories, Inc.: Amendment 39-17077; 
Docket No. FAA-2012-0083; Directorate Identifier 2010-SW-022-AD.

(a) Applicability

    This AD applies to High Landing Gear Aft Crosstube Assembly (aft 
crosstube) part number (P/N) 412-321-104 and P/N 412-321-304, 
installed on Agusta S.p.A. Model AB412 and AB412EP and Bell 
Helicopter Textron, Inc., Model 412, 412CF, and 412EP helicopters, 
certificated in any category.

(b) Unsafe Condition

    This AD defines the unsafe condition as cracked aft crosstube. 
This condition could result in collapse of the landing gear, and 
subsequent loss of control of the helicopter.

(c) Effective Date

    This AD becomes effective July 30, 2012.

(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.

(e) Required Actions

    (1) Within 50 hours time-in-service (TIS) establish a life limit 
of 20,000 takeoffs and landings for each aft crosstube P/N 412-321-
304. For the purposes of this AD, a takeoff and landing is defined 
as the cycle from when the helicopter gets light on the skids 
(takeoff) unloading the aft crosstube and then settles on the skids 
again (landing) reloading the aft crosstubes. Either the number of 
landings or takeoffs may be counted.
    (i) Create a component history card or equivalent record.
    (ii) Determine and record on the history card or equivalent 
record the total number of takeoffs and landings for each aft 
crosstube. If the takeoff and landing information is unavailable, 
estimate the number by multiplying the airframe hours by 10.
    (2) Within the next 450 takeoffs and landings, if an aft 
crosstube has reached 20,000 or more takeoffs and landings, replace 
it with an airworthy aft crosstube.
    (3) Before reaching 2,500 takeoffs and landings or for an aft 
crosstube with 2,500 or more takeoffs and landings, within 50 hours 
TIS or within the next 250 takeoffs and landings, whichever occurs 
first, prepare the aft crosstube inspection areas as depicted in 
Figure 1 of Aeronautical Accessories, Inc. (AAI), Alert Service 
Bulletin No. AA-07109, dated April 3, 2008 (ASB), by following the 
Accomplishment Instructions, Part B, paragraphs 1 through 4, of the 
ASB. Using a 10X or higher magnifying glass, inspect the prepared 
areas of each aft crosstube for a crack. If there is a crack, before 
further flight, replace the cracked aft crosstube with an airworthy 
aft crosstube. If there are no cracks, after completing the aft 
crosstube inspection, prime and paint the inspection area by 
following the Accomplishment Instructions, Part B, paragraphs 6 and 
7, of the ASB.
    (4) Thereafter, at intervals not to exceed 450 takeoffs and 
landings, clean the inspection area. Using a 10X or higher 
magnifying glass, inspect the clear-coated area of the aft crosstube 
for a crack.
    (5) If there is a crack, before further flight, replace the 
cracked aft crosstube with an airworthy aft crosstube.
    (6) Within 30 days or before reaching 2,500 takeoffs and 
landings, whichever occurs later, and thereafter at intervals not to 
exceed 2,500 takeoffs and landings or 12 months, whichever occurs 
first, determine the horizontal deflection of each aft crosstube 
from the centerline of the helicopter (BL 0.0) to the outside of the 
skid tubes by following the Accomplishment Instructions, Part D, 
paragraphs 1 through 3, of the ASB. If the measured aft crosstube 
horizontal deflection depicted in Figure 2 of the ASB is less than 
57 inches (1,448 mm) or greater than 59 inches (1,499 mm), replace 
the aft crosstube with an airworthy aft crosstube.
    (7) Within 3 months or on or before reaching 7,500 takeoffs and 
landings, whichever occurs later, and thereafter at intervals not to 
exceed 5,000 takeoffs and landings:
    (i) Remove the aft crosstube assembly by removing the aft 
crosstube support beam assembly, P/N 604-030-001, and both aft 
crosstube clamp assemblies, P/N 604-027-002.
    (ii) Remove paint and sealant from the aft crosstube outboard of 
the upper center support to top of saddles, both sides, as depicted 
in Figure 3 of the ASB.
    (iii) Fluorescent penetrant inspect each aft crosstube outboard 
of the upper center support as depicted in Figure 3 of the ASB for a 
crack.
    (iv) If there is a crack, before further flight, replace the 
cracked aft crosstube with an airworthy aft crosstube.
    (8) Revise the helicopter Airworthiness Limitations section of 
the applicable maintenance manuals or the Instructions for Continued 
Airworthiness (ICA) by establishing a new retirement life of 20,000 
takeoff and landings for aft crosstube P/N 412-321-304 by making pen 
and ink changes or inserting a copy of this AD into the maintenance 
manual or the ICAs.

(f) Alternative Methods of Compliance (AMOCs)

    (1) The Manager, Rotorcraft Certification Office, FAA, may 
approve AMOCs for this AD. Send your proposal to: Martin R. Crane, 
Aviation Safety Engineer, Rotorcraft Directorate, Rotorcraft 
Certification Office, 2601 Meacham Blvd., Fort Worth, Texas 76137, 
telephone (817) 222-5170, email martin.r.crane@faa.gov.
    (2) For operations conducted under a 14 CFR part 119 operating 
certificate or under

[[Page 37770]]

14 CFR part 119, 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.

(g) Additional Information

    The FAA-accepted AAI Instructions for Continued Airworthiness 
Report Number AA-01136, and the Bell Helicopter Textron Alert 
Service Bulletin No. 412-08-129, dated May 12, 2008, which are not 
incorporated by reference, contain additional information about 
inspecting the aft crosstube for a crack. For the AAI service 
information, contact Aeronautical Accessories, Inc., P.O. Box 3689, 
Bristol, Tennessee 37625-3689, telephone (423) 538-5151 or 1-800-
251-7094, fax (423) 538-8469, or at http://www.aero-access.com. For 
the Bell Helicopter Textron service information, contact Bell 
Helicopter Textron, Inc., P.O. Box 482, Fort Worth, TX 76101, 
telephone (817) 280-3391, fax (817) 280-6466, or at http://www.bellcustomer.com/files.

(h) Subject

    Joint Aircraft Service Component (JASC) Code: 32: Landing Gear.

(i) Material Incorporated by Reference

    (1) The Director of the Federal Register approved the 
incorporation by reference (IBR) of the following service 
information under 5 U.S.C. 552(a) and 1 CFR part 51.
    (2) You must use the following service information to do the 
actions required by this AD, unless the AD specifies otherwise.
    (3) The following service information was approved for IBR on 
July 10, 2012.
    (i) Aeronautical Accessories, Inc., Alert Service Bulletin No. 
AA-07109, dated April 3, 2008.
    (4) For this service information, contact Aeronautical 
Accessories, Inc., P.O. Box 3689, Bristol, Tennessee 37625-3689, 
telephone (423) 538-5151 or 1-800-251-7094, fax (423) 538-8469, or 
at http://www.aero-access.com.
    (5) You may review a copy of this referenced service information 
at the FAA, Office of the Regional Counsel, Southwest Region, 2601 
Meacham Blvd., Room 663, Fort Worth, Texas 76137 or at the National 
Archives and Records Administration (NARA). For information on the 
availability of this material at NARA, call (202) 741-6030, or go 
to: http://www.archives.gov/federal_register/code_of_federal_regulations/ibr_locations.html.

    Issued in Fort Worth, Texas, on May 25, 2012.
Lance T. Gant,
Acting Manager, Rotorcraft Directorate, Aircraft Certification Service.
[FR Doc. 2012-15286 Filed 6-22-12; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4910-13-P