Airworthiness Directives; Sikorsky Aircraft-Manufactured Model S-64F Helicopters, 38744-38747 [2012-15978]

Download as PDF 38744 Federal Register / Vol. 77, No. 126 / Friday, June 29, 2012 / Proposed Rules passage of time, and (7) why disclosure of the information would be contrary to the public interest. Issued in Washington, DC on June 25, 2012. Kathleen Hogan, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Energy Efficiency, Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy. [FR Doc. 2012–15987 Filed 6–28–12; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6450–01–P DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Part 39 [Docket No. FAA–2012–0689; Directorate Identifier 2009–SW–065–AD] RIN 2120–AA64 Airworthiness Directives; Sikorsky Aircraft-Manufactured Model S–64F Helicopters Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT. ACTION: Notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM). AGENCY: We propose to supersede an existing airworthiness directive (AD) for the Sikorsky Aircraft Corporationmanufactured Model S–64F helicopters, now under the Erickson Air-Crane Incorporated (Erickson) Model S–64F type certificate. That AD currently requires inspections, rework, and replacement, if necessary, of the main gearbox (MGB) second stage lower planetary plate (plate). Since we issued that AD, the manufacturer has conducted a configuration review and analysis, and a review of the service history of certain components. The proposed actions are intended to establish life limits for certain components, remove various parts from service, and require consistency in the part numbers of certain four bladed tail rotor (T/R) assemblies to prevent fatigue cracking, failure from static overload, and subsequent loss of control of the helicopter. SUMMARY: We must receive comments on this proposed AD by August 28, 2012. 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 erowe on DSK2VPTVN1PROD with PROPOSALS-1 DATES: VerDate Mar<15>2010 14:46 Jun 28, 2012 Jkt 226001 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 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 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 AD, contact Erickson AirCrane Incorporated, ATTN: Chris Erickson/Compliance Officer, 3100 Willow Springs Rd, P.O. Box 3247, Central Point, OR 97502, telephone (541) 664–5544, fax (541) 664–2312, email address cerickson@ericksonaircrane.com. You may review a copy of this service information at the FAA, Office of the Regional Counsel, Southwest Region, 2601 Meacham Blvd., Room 663, Fort Worth, Texas 76137. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Michael Kohner, Aviation Safety Engineer, FAA, Rotorcraft Directorate, Rotorcraft Certification Office, Fort Worth, Texas 76137, telephone (817) 222–5170, email 7-avs-asw-170@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. PO 00000 Frm 00003 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 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 On May 9, 1997, we issued AD 97– 10–15, Amendment 39–10028 (62 FR 28321, May 23, 1997), for the Sikorsky Aircraft-manufactured Model S–64F helicopters (now under the Erickson Model S–64F helicopter type certificate) with a plate, P/N 6435–20516–101, with 2,000 or more hours time-in-service (TIS). That AD requires, before the first flight of each day, inspecting the MGB main oil filter for magnesium contamination, and if magnesium contamination is present, replacing the MGB assembly. That AD also requires inspecting the MGB assembly within 100 hours TIS, and thereafter at intervals not to exceed 500 hours TIS, and if necessary, replacing the MGB assembly. Finally, that AD requires, at the next overhaul of the MGB assembly, inspecting and reworking the plate. That action was prompted by two incidents in which the plate was found cracked. The requirements of that AD are intended to prevent failure of the plate due to fatigue cracking, which could lead to failure of the MGB and subsequent loss of control of the helicopter. Actions Since Existing AD Was Issued Since we issued AD 97–10–15, Erickson has performed additional analysis as a part of a configuration review and has also reviewed the service history of certain components. Erickson determined that certain lifelimits and other maintenance requirements need to be revised, and released Erickson Service Bulletin (SB) No. 64F General-1, Revision 17, dated August 17, 2010 (SB No. 64F General1, Rev. 17). We have reviewed this SB and have determined that the retirement lives of certain parts need to be revised. We have also determined that certain parts, including the plate, P/N 6435– 20516–101, which is the subject of the existing AD, should be removed from service and should no longer be eligible for installation on these helicopters. FAA’s Determination We are proposing this AD because we evaluated all the relevant information and determined the unsafe condition described previously is likely to exist or E:\FR\FM\29JNP1.SGM 29JNP1 Federal Register / Vol. 77, No. 126 / Friday, June 29, 2012 / Proposed Rules develop in other products of the same type design. Related Service Information SB No. 64F General-1, Rev. 17, contains the Airworthiness Limitations Schedule for the Model S–64F helicopter and lists the parts and assemblies with their specified retirement lives. erowe on DSK2VPTVN1PROD with PROPOSALS-1 Proposed AD Requirements This AD proposes to reduce or establish the life limits for certain flightcritical components, remove other parts with service difficulties from service, and require that T/R blade assembly P/ N 65160–00001–048 be installed only as a set of four and not be installed with another part-numbered blade. The requirements in current AD 97–10–15 would be superseded and the partnumbered planetary plate, which is the subject of that AD, would be removed from service. This proposed AD would require, before further flight, a change in the life-limit for the following components: • Main Rotor (M/R) Blade Assembly, P/N 6415–20601–045; • Main Transmission Support Beam Assembly, LH, P/N 6420–62363–045; • Main Transmission Support Beam Assembly, RH, P/N 6420–62363–046; • Left Splice Fitting (Transition Fitting), Rotary, Rudder Boom, P/N 6420–66341–101; • Right Splice Fitting (Transition Fitting), Rotary, Rudder Boom, P/N 6420–66341 102; • M/R Drive Shaft, P/N 6435–20536– 101; • Pressure Plate Assembly, Rotary Wing Head, P/N 65101–11016–042; • Horn and Liner Assembly, P/N 65102–11047–041; • Lower Hub Plate Assembly, P/N 65103–11009–041; • Horizontal Hinge Pin, Rotary Wing Head, P/N 65103–11020–103; • Damper Bracket Assembly, Rotary Wing Head, P/N 65103–11032–043; • Hub Subassembly, Rotary Wing, P/ N 65103–11310–043; • Shaft Assembly, Pitch Control Tail Gearbox, P/N 65358–07035–043; and • Rod End Assembly, Primary Servo Assembly, P/N 65652–11212–041. In addition to proposing new or revised life limits for certain flightcritical components, this AD also proposes to remove the following components from service due to service difficulties: • Spindle Assembly, Rotary Rudder, P/N 6410–30302–041; • MGB Second Stage Lower Planetary Plate, P/N 6435–20516–101 or 6435– 20516–102; VerDate Mar<15>2010 14:46 Jun 28, 2012 Jkt 226001 38745 • Bracket Assembly, Main Servo, P/N 6435–20527–041 or 6435–20527–042; • Primary Servo Link Assembly, Tandem Servo, M/R, P/N 6465–62161– 042; • Shoulder Bolt, T/R, P/N 65111– 07001–102; and • T/R Blade Assembly, P/N 65161– 00001–041. This proposed AD contains only a portion of the life-limited parts for this model helicopter, and is not an allinclusive list. 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. Costs of Compliance We estimate that this proposed AD would affect 7 helicopters of U.S. Registry and estimate, at an average labor rate of $85 per hour, the following costs for removing from service the parts listed in Table 2 of this proposed AD action: • Reviewing helicopter records to determine if an affected part is installed will require approximately 2 workhours, for a cost per helicopter of $170 and a fleet cost of $1,190. • Replacing the rotary rudder spindle assembly will require 10 work-hours and a parts cost of $2,787, for a cost per helicopter of $3,637 and a fleet cost of $25,459. • Replacing the plate will require 40 work-hours and a parts cost of $43,750, for a cost per helicopter of $47,150 and a fleet cost of $330,050. • Replacing the main servo bracket assembly will require 2 work-hours and a parts cost of $5,223, for a cost per helicopter of $5,393 and a fleet cost of $37,751. • Replacing the primary servo link assembly of the M/R tandem servo will require 10 work-hours and a parts cost of $14,533, for a cost per helicopter of $15,383 and a fleet cost of $107,681. • Replacing the T/R shoulder bolt will require 10 work-hours and a parts cost of $571, for a cost per helicopter of $1,421 and a fleet cost of $9,947. • Replacing the T/R Blade Assembly will require 8 work-hours and a parts cost of $125,765 for a cost per helicopter of $126,445 and a fleet cost of $885,115. • The total cost to replace the parts that are proposed to be removed from service is estimated to be $199,599 per helicopter and a fleet cost of $1,397,193. Regulatory Findings 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, PO 00000 Frm 00004 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 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 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 removing Amendment 39–10028 (62 FR 28321, May 23, 1997), and adding the following new AD: E:\FR\FM\29JNP1.SGM 29JNP1 38746 Federal Register / Vol. 77, No. 126 / Friday, June 29, 2012 / Proposed Rules ERICKSON AIR–CRANE INCORPORATED: Docket No. FAA–2012–0689; Directorate Identifier 2009–SW–065–AD. (a) Applicability This AD applies to Sikorsky Aircraft Corporation-manufactured Model S–64F helicopters, now under the Erickson AirCrane Incorporated Model S–64F type certificate, certificated in any category. (b) Unsafe Condition This AD defines the unsafe condition as a fatigue crack in a flight critical component. This condition could result in component failure from static overload and subsequent loss of control of the helicopter. (c) Other Affected ADs This AD supersedes AD 97–10–15, Amendment 39–10028 (62 FR 28321, May 23, 1997). (d) Compliance You are responsible for performing each action required by this AD within the specified compliance time unless accomplished previously. (e) Required Actions (1) Before further flight: (i) Remove from service any part with a number of hours time-in-service (TIS) equal to or greater than the part’s retirement life as stated in following Table 1 of this AD. TABLE 1—PARTS WITH NEW OR REVISED LIFE LIMITS Part name Part No. (P/N) Main Rotor (M/R) Blade Assembly ............................................................................ Main Transmission Support Beam Assembly, LH ..................................................... Main Transmission Support Beam Assembly, RH .................................................... Left Splice Fitting (Transition Fitting), Rotary, Rudder Boom ................................... Right Splice Fitting (Transition Fitting), Rotary, Rudder Boom ................................. M/R Drive Shaft ......................................................................................................... Pressure Plate Assembly, Rotary Wing Head .......................................................... 6415–20601–045 6420–62363–045 6420–62363–046 6420–66341–101 6420–66341–102 6435–20536–101 65101–11016– 042 65102–11047– 041 65103–11009– 041 65103–11020– 103 65103–11032– 043 65103–11310– 043 65358–07035– 043 65652–11212– 041 Horn and Liner Assembly .......................................................................................... Lower Hub Plate Assembly ....................................................................................... Horizontal Hinge Pin, Rotary Wing Head .................................................................. Damper Bracket Assembly, Rotary Wing Head ........................................................ Hub Subassembly, Rotary Wing ............................................................................... Shaft Assembly, Pitch Control Tail Gearbox ............................................................. Rod End Assembly, Primary Servo Assembly .......................................................... Note to Table 1: The list of parts in Table 1 of this AD contains only a portion of the life-limited parts for this model helicopter and is not an all-inclusive list. (ii) Revise the retirement life of each part as shown in Table 1 of this AD by making pen and ink changes or by inserting a copy of this AD into the Airworthiness Limitations section of the maintenance manual. (iii) Record on the component history card or equivalent record the retirement life for each part as shown in Table 1 of this AD. Retirement life 13,280 hours TIS. 9,300 hours TIS. 9,300 hours TIS. 8,300 hours TIS. 8,300 hours TIS. 2,200 hours TIS. 8,800 hours TIS. 1,140 hours TIS. 15,500 hours TIS. 5,100 hours TIS. 20,000 hours TIS. 21,600 hours TIS. 9,400 hours TIS. 20,800 hours TIS. (2) Before further flight, remove from service any part with a P/N listed in the following Table 2 of this AD, regardless of the part’s TIS. The P/Ns listed in Table 2 of this AD are not eligible for installation on any helicopter. TABLE 2—PARTS TO BE REMOVED FROM SERVICE Part name P/N erowe on DSK2VPTVN1PROD with PROPOSALS-1 Spindle Assembly, Rotary Rudder ........................................................... Main Gearbox Second Stage Lower Planetary Plate .............................. Bracket Assembly, Main Servo ................................................................ Primary Servo Link, Tandem Servo, M/R ................................................ Shoulder Bolt, Tail Rotor (T/R) ................................................................. T/R Blade Assembly ................................................................................. (3) Before further flight, if a T/R blade assembly, P/N 65160–00001–048, is installed, remove any of the other three T/R blade assemblies that have a different P/N and replace it with a T/R blade assembly, P/ N 65160–00001–048. The T/R blade assembly, P/N 65160–00001–048, must be installed in sets of four only. (f) Alternative Methods of Compliance (AMOCs) (1) The Manager, Rotorcraft Certification Office, FAA, may approve AMOCs for this AD. Send your proposal to: Michael Kohner, VerDate Mar<15>2010 14:46 Jun 28, 2012 Jkt 226001 6410–30302–041. 6435–20516–101 or 6435–20516–102. 6435–20527–041 or 6435–20527–042. 6465–62161–042. 65111–07001–102. 65161–00001–041. Aviation Safety Engineer, FAA, Rotorcraft Directorate, Rotorcraft Certification Office, Fort Worth, Texas, 76137, telephone (817) 222–5170, email 7-avs-asw-170@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. PO 00000 Frm 00005 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 (g) Additional Information Erickson Service Bulletin No. 64F General1, Revision 17, dated August 17, 2010, which is not incorporated by reference, contains additional information about the subject of this AD. For service information identified in this AD, contact Erickson Air-Crane Incorporated, ATTN: Chris Erickson/ Compliance Officer, 3100 Willow Springs Rd, PO Box 3247, Central Point, OR 97502, telephone (541) 664–5544, fax (541) 664– 2312, email address cerickson@ericksonaircrane.com. You may review a copy of this information at the FAA, E:\FR\FM\29JNP1.SGM 29JNP1 38747 Federal Register / Vol. 77, No. 126 / Friday, June 29, 2012 / Proposed Rules Office of the Regional Counsel, Southwest Region, 2601 Meacham Blvd., Room 663, Fort Worth, Texas 76137. (h) Subject Joint Aircraft Service Component (JASC) Code: 6300: Main Rotor Drive System and 6400: Tail Rotor System. Issued in Fort Worth, Texas, on June 21, 2012. M. Monica Merritt, Acting Manager, Rotorcraft Directorate, Aircraft Certification Service. [FR Doc. 2012–15978 Filed 6–28–12; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910–13–P DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Office of the Secretary 14 CFR Parts 234 and 235 [Docket No. DOT–OST–2010–0211] RIN 2105–AE07 Reports by Air Carriers on Incidents Involving Animals During Air Transport Office of the Secretary (OST), Department of Transportation (DOT). ACTION: Notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM). AGENCY: The Department is proposing to amend its existing rule regarding the reporting of incidents involving animals during air transport, 14 CFR 234.13, to expand the reporting requirement to U.S. carriers that operate scheduled service with at least one aircraft with a design capacity of more than 60 seats, to expand the definition of ‘‘animal’’ to include all cats and dogs transported by the carrier, regardless of whether the cat or dog is transported as a pet by its owner or as part of a commercial shipment (e.g., shipped by a breeder), and to require all covered carriers to provide in their December reports the total number of animals that were lost, injured, or died during air transport. We also seek comment on requiring carriers to report the total number of animals transported in the calendar year in the December reports. DATES: Comments should be filed by August 28, 2012. Late-filed comments will be considered to the extent practicable. ADDRESSES: You may file comments identified by the docket number DOT– OST–2010–0211 by any of the following methods: • Federal eRulemaking Portal: go to http://www.regulations.gov and follow the online instructions for submitting comments. • Mail: Docket Management Facility, U.S. Department of Transportation, 1200 erowe on DSK2VPTVN1PROD with PROPOSALS-1 SUMMARY: VerDate Mar<15>2010 14:46 Jun 28, 2012 Jkt 226001 New Jersey Ave. SE., Room W12–140, Washington, DC 20590–0001. • Hand Delivery or Courier: West Building Ground Floor, Room W12–140, 1200 New Jersey Ave. SE., between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. ET, Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. • Fax: 202–493–2251. Instructions: You must include the agency name and docket number DOT– OST–2010–0211 or Regulatory Identification Number (RIN) for the rulemaking at the beginning of your comment. All comments will be posted without change to http:// www.regulations.gov, including any personal information provided. Privacy Act: Anyone is able to search the electronic form of all comments received in any of our dockets by the name of the individual submitting the comment (or signing the comment if submitted on behalf of an association, a business, a labor union, etc.). You may review DOT’s complete Privacy Act statement in the Federal Register published on April 11, 2000 (65 FR 19477–78), or you may visit http:// DocketsInfo.dot.gov. Docket: For access to the docket to read background documents or comments received, go to http:// www.regulations.gov or to the street address listed above. Follow the online instructions for accessing the docket. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Vinh Q. Nguyen, Trial Attorney, Office of the Assistant General Counsel for Aviation Enforcement and Proceedings, U.S. Department of Transportation, 1200 New Jersey Ave. SE., Washington, DC 20590, 202–366–9342 (phone), 202– 366–7152 (fax), vinh.nguyen@dot.gov. You may also contact Blane A. Workie, Deputy Assistant General Counsel, Office of the Assistant General Counsel for Aviation Enforcement and Proceedings, U.S. Department of Transportation, 1200 New Jersey Ave. SE., Washington, DC 20590, 202–366– 9342 (phone), 202–366–7152 (fax), blane.workie@dot.gov. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Background The current rule regarding reporting of incidents involving animals during air transport derives from the Wendell H. Ford Aviation Investment and Reform Act for the 21st Century or ‘‘AIR–21’’ (Pub. L. 106–181), which was signed into law on April 5, 2000. It included section 710, ‘‘Reports by Carriers on Incidents Involving Animals During Air Transport,’’ and was codified as 49 U.S.C. 41721. Section 41721 contains the following provisions: PO 00000 Frm 00006 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 (a) In General.—An air carrier that provides scheduled passenger air transportation shall submit monthly to the Secretary a report on any incidents involving the loss, injury, or death of an animal (as defined by the Secretary of Transportation) during air transport provided by the air carrier. The report shall be in such form and contain such information as the Secretary determines appropriate. * * * * * (d) Publication of Data.—The Secretary shall publish data on incidents and complaints involving the loss, injury, or death of an animal during air transport in a manner comparable to other consumer complaint and incident data. (e) Air Transport.—For purposes of this section, the air transport of an animal includes the entire period during which an animal is in the custody of an air carrier, from check-in of the animal prior to departure until the animal is returned to the owner or guardian of the animal at the final destination of the animal. On August 11, 2003, DOT, through its Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), issued a final rule implementing section 710 of AIR–21. See 68 FR 47798. The rule required air carriers that provide scheduled passenger air transportation to submit a report to the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) of the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) on any incident involving the loss, injury, or death of an animal during air transportation provided by the air carrier. Under the rule, the reports would then be shared with DOT, which would publish the data, as required by AIR–21, in a format similar to the manner in which it publishes data on consumer complaints and other incidents. However, issues arose regarding whether APHIS had the capability to accept such information directly from the carriers and pass it on to DOT. In order to resolve any such issues, on February 14, 2005, DOT made a technical change in the rule to require reporting airlines to submit the required information directly to DOT’s Aviation Consumer Protection Division (ACPD) rather than APHIS and to make the rule part of DOT’s economic regulations. See 70 FR 7392. The rule is codified at 14 CFR 234.13. Section 234.13 requires air carriers that provide scheduled passenger air transportation to submit a report to the ACPD on any incidents involving the loss, injury, or death of an animal during air transportation within 15 days of the end of the month during which the incident occurred. It defines ‘‘animal’’ as any warm- or cold-blooded animal which, at the time of transportation, is being kept as a pet in a family household in the United States. The air transport of an animal covers the E:\FR\FM\29JNP1.SGM 29JNP1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 77, Number 126 (Friday, June 29, 2012)]
[Proposed Rules]
[Pages 38744-38747]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2012-15978]


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DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION

Federal Aviation Administration

14 CFR Part 39

[Docket No. FAA-2012-0689; Directorate Identifier 2009-SW-065-AD]
RIN 2120-AA64


Airworthiness Directives; Sikorsky Aircraft-Manufactured Model S-
64F Helicopters

AGENCY: Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT.

ACTION: Notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM).

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SUMMARY: We propose to supersede an existing airworthiness directive 
(AD) for the Sikorsky Aircraft Corporation-manufactured Model S-64F 
helicopters, now under the Erickson Air-Crane Incorporated (Erickson) 
Model S-64F type certificate. That AD currently requires inspections, 
rework, and replacement, if necessary, of the main gearbox (MGB) second 
stage lower planetary plate (plate). Since we issued that AD, the 
manufacturer has conducted a configuration review and analysis, and a 
review of the service history of certain components. The proposed 
actions are intended to establish life limits for certain components, 
remove various parts from service, and require consistency in the part 
numbers of certain four bladed tail rotor (T/R) assemblies to prevent 
fatigue cracking, failure from static overload, and subsequent loss of 
control of the helicopter.

DATES: We must receive comments on this proposed AD by August 28, 2012.

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 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 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 AD, contact 
Erickson Air-Crane Incorporated, ATTN: Chris Erickson/Compliance 
Officer, 3100 Willow Springs Rd, P.O. Box 3247, Central Point, OR 
97502, telephone (541) 664-5544, fax (541) 664-2312, email address 
cerickson@ericksonaircrane.com. You may review a copy of this service 
information at the FAA, Office of the Regional Counsel, Southwest 
Region, 2601 Meacham Blvd., Room 663, Fort Worth, Texas 76137.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Michael Kohner, Aviation Safety 
Engineer, FAA, Rotorcraft Directorate, Rotorcraft Certification Office, 
Fort Worth, Texas 76137, telephone (817) 222-5170, email 7-avs-asw-170@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

    On May 9, 1997, we issued AD 97-10-15, Amendment 39-10028 (62 FR 
28321, May 23, 1997), for the Sikorsky Aircraft-manufactured Model S-
64F helicopters (now under the Erickson Model S-64F helicopter type 
certificate) with a plate, P/N 6435-20516-101, with 2,000 or more hours 
time-in-service (TIS). That AD requires, before the first flight of 
each day, inspecting the MGB main oil filter for magnesium 
contamination, and if magnesium contamination is present, replacing the 
MGB assembly. That AD also requires inspecting the MGB assembly within 
100 hours TIS, and thereafter at intervals not to exceed 500 hours TIS, 
and if necessary, replacing the MGB assembly. Finally, that AD 
requires, at the next overhaul of the MGB assembly, inspecting and 
reworking the plate. That action was prompted by two incidents in which 
the plate was found cracked. The requirements of that AD are intended 
to prevent failure of the plate due to fatigue cracking, which could 
lead to failure of the MGB and subsequent loss of control of the 
helicopter.

Actions Since Existing AD Was Issued

    Since we issued AD 97-10-15, Erickson has performed additional 
analysis as a part of a configuration review and has also reviewed the 
service history of certain components. Erickson determined that certain 
life-limits and other maintenance requirements need to be revised, and 
released Erickson Service Bulletin (SB) No. 64F General-1, Revision 17, 
dated August 17, 2010 (SB No. 64F General-1, Rev. 17). We have reviewed 
this SB and have determined that the retirement lives of certain parts 
need to be revised. We have also determined that certain parts, 
including the plate, P/N 6435-20516-101, which is the subject of the 
existing AD, should be removed from service and should no longer be 
eligible for installation on these helicopters.

FAA's Determination

    We are proposing this AD because we evaluated all the relevant 
information and determined the unsafe condition described previously is 
likely to exist or

[[Page 38745]]

develop in other products of the same type design.

Related Service Information

    SB No. 64F General-1, Rev. 17, contains the Airworthiness 
Limitations Schedule for the Model S-64F helicopter and lists the parts 
and assemblies with their specified retirement lives.

Proposed AD Requirements

    This AD proposes to reduce or establish the life limits for certain 
flight-critical components, remove other parts with service 
difficulties from service, and require that T/R blade assembly P/N 
65160-00001-048 be installed only as a set of four and not be installed 
with another part-numbered blade. The requirements in current AD 97-10-
15 would be superseded and the part-numbered planetary plate, which is 
the subject of that AD, would be removed from service. This proposed AD 
would require, before further flight, a change in the life-limit for 
the following components:
     Main Rotor (M/R) Blade Assembly, P/N 6415-20601-045;
     Main Transmission Support Beam Assembly, LH, P/N 6420-
62363-045;
     Main Transmission Support Beam Assembly, RH, P/N 6420-
62363-046;
     Left Splice Fitting (Transition Fitting), Rotary, Rudder 
Boom, P/N 6420-66341-101;
     Right Splice Fitting (Transition Fitting), Rotary, Rudder 
Boom, P/N 6420-66341 102;
     M/R Drive Shaft, P/N 6435-20536-101;
     Pressure Plate Assembly, Rotary Wing Head, P/N 65101-
11016-042;
     Horn and Liner Assembly, P/N 65102-11047-041;
     Lower Hub Plate Assembly, P/N 65103-11009-041;
     Horizontal Hinge Pin, Rotary Wing Head, P/N 65103-11020-
103;
     Damper Bracket Assembly, Rotary Wing Head, P/N 65103-
11032-043;
     Hub Subassembly, Rotary Wing, P/N 65103-11310-043;
     Shaft Assembly, Pitch Control Tail Gearbox, P/N 65358-
07035-043; and
     Rod End Assembly, Primary Servo Assembly, P/N 65652-11212-
041.
    In addition to proposing new or revised life limits for certain 
flight-critical components, this AD also proposes to remove the 
following components from service due to service difficulties:
     Spindle Assembly, Rotary Rudder, P/N 6410-30302-041;
     MGB Second Stage Lower Planetary Plate, P/N 6435-20516-101 
or 6435-20516-102;
     Bracket Assembly, Main Servo, P/N 6435-20527-041 or 6435-
20527-042;
     Primary Servo Link Assembly, Tandem Servo, M/R, P/N 6465-
62161-042;
     Shoulder Bolt, T/R, P/N 65111-07001-102; and
     T/R Blade Assembly, P/N 65161-00001-041.
    This proposed AD contains only a portion of the life-limited parts 
for this model helicopter, and is not an all-inclusive list.

Costs of Compliance

    We estimate that this proposed AD would affect 7 helicopters of 
U.S. Registry and estimate, at an average labor rate of $85 per hour, 
the following costs for removing from service the parts listed in Table 
2 of this proposed AD action:
     Reviewing helicopter records to determine if an affected 
part is installed will require approximately 2 work-hours, for a cost 
per helicopter of $170 and a fleet cost of $1,190.
     Replacing the rotary rudder spindle assembly will require 
10 work-hours and a parts cost of $2,787, for a cost per helicopter of 
$3,637 and a fleet cost of $25,459.
     Replacing the plate will require 40 work-hours and a parts 
cost of $43,750, for a cost per helicopter of $47,150 and a fleet cost 
of $330,050.
     Replacing the main servo bracket assembly will require 2 
work-hours and a parts cost of $5,223, for a cost per helicopter of 
$5,393 and a fleet cost of $37,751.
     Replacing the primary servo link assembly of the M/R 
tandem servo will require 10 work-hours and a parts cost of $14,533, 
for a cost per helicopter of $15,383 and a fleet cost of $107,681.
     Replacing the T/R shoulder bolt will require 10 work-hours 
and a parts cost of $571, for a cost per helicopter of $1,421 and a 
fleet cost of $9,947.
     Replacing the T/R Blade Assembly will require 8 work-hours 
and a parts cost of $125,765 for a cost per helicopter of $126,445 and 
a fleet cost of $885,115.
     The total cost to replace the parts that are proposed to 
be removed from service is estimated to be $199,599 per helicopter and 
a fleet cost of $1,397,193.

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

    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 FAA amends Sec.  39.13 by removing Amendment 39-10028 (62 FR 
28321, May 23, 1997), and adding the following new AD:


[[Page 38746]]


ERICKSON AIR-CRANE INCORPORATED: Docket No. FAA-2012-0689; 
Directorate Identifier 2009-SW-065-AD.

(a) Applicability

    This AD applies to Sikorsky Aircraft Corporation-manufactured 
Model S-64F helicopters, now under the Erickson Air-Crane 
Incorporated Model S-64F type certificate, certificated in any 
category.

(b) Unsafe Condition

    This AD defines the unsafe condition as a fatigue crack in a 
flight critical component. This condition could result in component 
failure from static overload and subsequent loss of control of the 
helicopter.

(c) Other Affected ADs

    This AD supersedes AD 97-10-15, Amendment 39-10028 (62 FR 28321, 
May 23, 1997).

(d) Compliance

    You are responsible for performing each action required by this 
AD within the specified compliance time unless accomplished 
previously.

(e) Required Actions

    (1) Before further flight:
    (i) Remove from service any part with a number of hours time-in-
service (TIS) equal to or greater than the part's retirement life as 
stated in following Table 1 of this AD.

             Table 1--Parts With New or Revised Life Limits
------------------------------------------------------------------------
            Part name               Part No. (P/N)     Retirement life
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Main Rotor (M/R) Blade Assembly..    6415-20601-045  13,280 hours TIS.
Main Transmission Support Beam       6420-62363-045  9,300 hours TIS.
 Assembly, LH.
Main Transmission Support Beam       6420-62363-046  9,300 hours TIS.
 Assembly, RH.
Left Splice Fitting (Transition      6420-66341-101  8,300 hours TIS.
 Fitting), Rotary, Rudder Boom.
Right Splice Fitting (Transition     6420-66341-102  8,300 hours TIS.
 Fitting), Rotary, Rudder Boom.
M/R Drive Shaft..................    6435-20536-101  2,200 hours TIS.
Pressure Plate Assembly, Rotary     65101-11016-042  8,800 hours TIS.
 Wing Head.
Horn and Liner Assembly..........   65102-11047-041  1,140 hours TIS.
Lower Hub Plate Assembly.........   65103-11009-041  15,500 hours TIS.
Horizontal Hinge Pin, Rotary Wing   65103-11020-103  5,100 hours TIS.
 Head.
Damper Bracket Assembly, Rotary     65103-11032-043  20,000 hours TIS.
 Wing Head.
Hub Subassembly, Rotary Wing.....   65103-11310-043  21,600 hours TIS.
Shaft Assembly, Pitch Control       65358-07035-043  9,400 hours TIS.
 Tail Gearbox.
Rod End Assembly, Primary Servo     65652-11212-041  20,800 hours TIS.
 Assembly.
------------------------------------------------------------------------


    Note to Table 1: The list of parts in Table 1 of this AD 
contains only a portion of the life-limited parts for this model 
helicopter and is not an all-inclusive list.

    (ii) Revise the retirement life of each part as shown in Table 1 
of this AD by making pen and ink changes or by inserting a copy of 
this AD into the Airworthiness Limitations section of the 
maintenance manual.
    (iii) Record on the component history card or equivalent record 
the retirement life for each part as shown in Table 1 of this AD.
    (2) Before further flight, remove from service any part with a 
P/N listed in the following Table 2 of this AD, regardless of the 
part's TIS. The P/Ns listed in Table 2 of this AD are not eligible 
for installation on any helicopter.

                Table 2--Parts To Be Removed From Service
------------------------------------------------------------------------
               Part name                               P/N
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Spindle Assembly, Rotary Rudder........  6410-30302-041.
Main Gearbox Second Stage Lower          6435-20516-101 or 6435-20516-
 Planetary Plate.                         102.
Bracket Assembly, Main Servo...........  6435-20527-041 or 6435-20527-
                                          042.
Primary Servo Link, Tandem Servo, M/R..  6465-62161-042.
Shoulder Bolt, Tail Rotor (T/R)........  65111-07001-102.
T/R Blade Assembly.....................  65161-00001-041.
------------------------------------------------------------------------

     (3) Before further flight, if a T/R blade assembly, P/N 65160-
00001-048, is installed, remove any of the other three T/R blade 
assemblies that have a different P/N and replace it with a T/R blade 
assembly, P/N 65160-00001-048. The T/R blade assembly, P/N 65160-
00001-048, must be installed in sets of four only.

(f) Alternative Methods of Compliance (AMOCs)

    (1) The Manager, Rotorcraft Certification Office, FAA, may 
approve AMOCs for this AD. Send your proposal to: Michael Kohner, 
Aviation Safety Engineer, FAA, Rotorcraft Directorate, Rotorcraft 
Certification Office, Fort Worth, Texas, 76137, telephone (817) 222-
5170, email 7-avs-asw-170@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.

(g) Additional Information

    Erickson Service Bulletin No. 64F General-1, Revision 17, dated 
August 17, 2010, which is not incorporated by reference, contains 
additional information about the subject of this AD. For service 
information identified in this AD, contact Erickson Air-Crane 
Incorporated, ATTN: Chris Erickson/Compliance Officer, 3100 Willow 
Springs Rd, PO Box 3247, Central Point, OR 97502, telephone (541) 
664-5544, fax (541) 664-2312, email address 
cerickson@ericksonaircrane.com. You may review a copy of this 
information at the FAA,

[[Page 38747]]

Office of the Regional Counsel, Southwest Region, 2601 Meacham 
Blvd., Room 663, Fort Worth, Texas 76137.

(h) Subject

    Joint Aircraft Service Component (JASC) Code: 6300: Main Rotor 
Drive System and 6400: Tail Rotor System.

    Issued in Fort Worth, Texas, on June 21, 2012.
M. Monica Merritt,
Acting Manager, Rotorcraft Directorate, Aircraft Certification Service.
[FR Doc. 2012-15978 Filed 6-28-12; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4910-13-P