Airworthiness Directives Airbus Helicopters (Previously Eurocopter France), 57742-57744 [2015-24251]

Download as PDF 57742 Federal Register / Vol. 80, No. 186 / Friday, September 25, 2015 / Proposed Rules DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Part 39 [Docket No. FAA–2015–3970; Directorate Identifier 2015–SW–006–AD] RIN 2120–AA64 Airworthiness Directives Airbus Helicopters (Previously Eurocopter France) Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT. ACTION: Notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM). AGENCY: SUMMARY: We propose to supersede airworthiness directive (AD) 2014–12– 51 for Airbus Helicopters (previously Eurocopter France) Model EC130B4 and EC130T2 helicopters. AD 2014–12–51 currently requires repetitively inspecting the tailboom to Fenestron junction frame (junction frame) for a crack. This proposed AD would retain the requirements of AD 2014–12–51, change the applicability from helicopters with certain hours time-inservice (TIS) to junction frames with certain hours TIS, and add a compliance time for sling cycles to the junction frame inspection interval. These proposed actions are intended to detect a crack and to prevent failure of the junction frame, which could result in loss of the Fenestron and subsequent loss of control of the helicopter. DATES: We must receive comments on this proposed AD by November 24, 2015. 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. mstockstill on DSK4VPTVN1PROD with PROPOSALS ADDRESSES: Examining the AD Docket You may examine the AD docket on the Internet at http:// www.regulations.gov by searching for and locating Docket No. FAA–2015– 3970; or in person at the Docket Operations Office between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:43 Sep 24, 2015 Jkt 235001 Federal holidays. The AD docket contains this proposed AD, the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) AD, the economic evaluation, any comments received and other information. The street address for the Docket Operations Office (telephone 800–647–5527) is in the ADDRESSES section. Comments will be available in the AD docket shortly after receipt. For service information identified in this proposed AD, contact Airbus Helicopters, Inc., 2701 N. Forum Drive, Grand Prairie, TX 75052; telephone (972) 641–0000 or (800) 232–0323; fax (972) 641–3775; or at http://www.air bushelicopters.com/techpub. You may review service information at the FAA, Office of the Regional Counsel, Southwest Region, 10101 Hillwood Pkwy, Room 6N–321, Fort Worth, TX 76177. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Robert Grant, Aviation Safety Engineer, Safety Management Group, FAA, Rotorcraft Directorate, FAA, 10101 Hillwood Pkwy, Fort Worth, TX 76177; email robert.grant@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 July 24, 2014, we issued AD 2014– 12–51, Amendment 39–17921 (79 FR 45335, August 5, 2014), which was sent previously as an Emergency AD to all PO 00000 Frm 00002 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 known U.S. owners and operators of Airbus Helicopters Model EC130B4 and EC130T2 helicopters. AD 2014–12–51 applies to helicopters with 690 or more hours TIS and requires, within 10 hours TIS, dye-penetrant inspecting certain areas of the junction frame for a crack. AD 2014–12–51 also requires, at intervals not exceeding 25 hours TIS, either repeating the dye-penetrant inspection or performing a borescope inspection of certain areas of the junction frame for a crack. If there is a crack, AD 2014–12–51 requires replacing the junction frame. Those actions are intended to detect a crack and to prevent failure of the junction frame, which could result in loss of the Fenestron and subsequent loss of control of the helicopter. AD 2014–12–51 was prompted by AD No. 2014–0145–E, dated June 6, 2014, issued by EASA, which is the Technical Agent for the Member States of the European Union, to correct an unsafe condition on Airbus Helicopters Model EC130B4 and EC130T2 helicopters. EASA advises of two incidents of crack propagation through the junction frame that initiated in the lower right-hand side between the web and the flange where the lower spar of the tailboom is joined. EASA states the cracks were of a significant length and not visible from the outside of the helicopter. EASA advises that this condition, if not detected, could lead to structural failure, possibly resulting in Fenestron detachment and consequent loss of control of the helicopter. As a result, EASA AD No. 2014–0145–E required a one-time visual inspection of the junction frame for a crack and a repetitive borescope inspection of the junction frame for a crack. EASA revised AD No. 2014–0145–E with AD No. 2014–0145R1, dated June 13, 2014. EASA AD No. 2014–0145R1 changes the compliance time by removing a calendar day requirement and by determining the time accumulated on the junction frame instead of on the helicopter. EASA AD No. 2014–0145R1 also allows the recurring inspection to be accomplished either by performing the borescope inspection or by repeating the visual inspection. Actions Since AD 2012–12–51 Was Issued Since we issued AD 2014–12–51 (79 FR 45335, August 5, 2014), EASA issued AD No. 2015–0033–E dated February 24, 2015 (EAD 2015–0033–E), which supersedes AD No. 2014–0145–E and AD No. 2014–0145R1. EASA determined that an inspection interval defined in sling cycles is necessary in E:\FR\FM\25SEP1.SGM 25SEP1 Federal Register / Vol. 80, No. 186 / Friday, September 25, 2015 / Proposed Rules addition to the existing flight hour inspection interval. EASA also acknowledges an alternative method to inspect from the outside of the tailboom. EASA AD No. 2015–0033–E therefore retains the previous inspection requirements of EASA AD No. 2014– 0145R1 and allows for an alternate external visual inspection method, which can be accomplished by a pilot, in combination with the internal inspections. This NPRM would retain the dye penetrant and borescope inspections in AD 2014–12–51 but would revise the compliance times. We have determined that applicable helicopters are those with 690 hours TIS accumulated on the junction frame instead of on the helicopter, and that it is necessary to include an inspection interval defined in sling cycles. mstockstill on DSK4VPTVN1PROD with PROPOSALS FAA’s Determination These helicopters have been approved by the aviation authority of France and are approved for operation in the United States. Pursuant to our bilateral agreement with France, EASA, its technical representative, has notified us of the unsafe condition described in its AD. We are proposing this AD because we evaluated all known relevant information and determined that an unsafe condition is likely to exist or develop on other helicopters of the same type design. Related Service Information Under 1 CFR Part 51 We reviewed Airbus Helicopters Emergency Alert Service Bulletin No. 05A017, Revision 2, dated February 20, 2015 (EASB 05A017), for Model EC130B4 and EC130T2 helicopters. EASB 05A017 describes alternate procedures for inspecting outside the tailboom for a crack at reduced inspection intervals in combination with the internal inspections at extended intervals. EASB 05A017 also specifies adding sling cycles to the existing flight hour inspection interval for helicopters that perform external load-carrying operations. EASA issued AD No. 2015–0033–E mandating the requirements in EASB 05A017 to ensure the continued airworthiness of these helicopters. This service information is reasonably available because the interested parties have access to it through their normal course of business or by means identified in the Addresses Section of this proposed AD. Other Related Service Information We have also reviewed Airbus Helicopters Service Bulletin No. EC130– VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:43 Sep 24, 2015 Jkt 235001 53–029, Revision 0, dated February 20, 2015 (SB EC130–53–029), which contains procedures to cut out the skin and splice at the junction frame to facilitate the external inspection specified in EASB 05A017. Proposed AD Requirements This proposed AD would require: • Before the junction frame reaches 700 hours TIS or within 10 hours TIS, whichever comes later, removing the horizontal stabilizer, cleaning the junction frame, and dye-penetrant inspecting around the circumference of the junction frame for a crack, paying particular attention to the area around the 4 spars. • Within 25 hours TIS or 390 sling cycles, whichever comes first, after the dye-penetrant inspection proposed by this AD, and thereafter at intervals not exceeding 25 hours TIS or 390 sling cycles, whichever comes first, either repeating the dye-penetrant inspection of this proposed AD or, if the area is clean, using a borescope, inspecting around the circumference of the junction frame for a crack. Differences Between This Proposed AD and the EASA AD The EASA AD includes alternate compliance instructions for helicopters modified with a cut-out in production by Airbus Helicopters Modification 350A087421 or in service by compliance with SB EC130–53–029. This proposed AD would not. Interim Action We consider this proposed AD to be an interim action. If final action is later identified, we might consider further rulemaking then. Costs of Compliance We estimate that this proposed AD would affect 208 helicopters of U.S. Registry. We estimate that operators may incur the following costs in order to comply with this AD. At an average labor rate of $85 per hour, dye-penetrant inspecting the junction frame would require 1 work-hour, for a cost per helicopter of $85, and a total cost of $17,680 for the fleet, per inspection cycle. Borescope inspecting the junction frame would require .5 work-hour, for a cost per helicopter of $43 and a total cost of $8,944 for the fleet, per inspection cycle. If required, replacing the junction frame would require 50 work-hours, and required parts would cost $60,000, for a cost per helicopter of $64,250. PO 00000 Frm 00003 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 57743 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: E:\FR\FM\25SEP1.SGM 25SEP1 57744 Federal Register / Vol. 80, No. 186 / Friday, September 25, 2015 / Proposed Rules 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 Airworthiness Directive (AD) 2014–12–51, Amendment 39-17921 (79 FR 45335, August 5, 2014), and adding the following new AD: ■ Airbus Helicopters (previously Eurocopter France): Docket No. FAA–2015–3970; Directorate Identifier 2015–SW–006–AD. (a) Applicability This AD applies to Airbus Helicopters Model EC130B4 and EC130T2 helicopters with a tailboom to fenestron junction frame (junction frame) that has 690 or more hours time-in-service (TIS), certificated in any category. (b) Unsafe Condition This AD defines the unsafe condition as a crack in the junction frame. This condition could result in failure of the junction frame, which could result in loss of the Fenestron and subsequent loss of control of the helicopter. (c) Affected ADs This AD supersedes AD 2014–12–51, Amendment 39–17921 (79 FR 45335, August 5, 2014). (d) Comments Due Date We must receive comments by November 24, 2015. mstockstill on DSK4VPTVN1PROD with PROPOSALS (e) 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. (f) Required Actions (1) Before the junction frame reaches 700 hours TIS or within 10 hours TIS, whichever occurs later, remove the horizontal stabilizer, clean the junction frame, and dye-penetrant inspect around the circumference of the junction frame for a crack in the areas shown in Figure 1 of Airbus Helicopters EC130 Emergency Alert Service Bulletin No. 05A017, Revision 2, dated February 20, 2015 (EASB 05A017). Pay particular attention to the area around the 4 spars (item b) of Figure 1 of EASB 05A017. An example of a crack is shown in Figure 3 of EASB 05A017. (2) Within 25 hours TIS or 390 sling cycles, whichever occurs first after the inspection required by paragraph (f)(1) of this AD, and thereafter at intervals not exceeding 25 hours TIS or 390 sling cycles, whichever occurs first, either perform the actions of paragraph (f)(1) of this AD or, if the area is clean, using a borescope, inspect around the circumference of the junction frame for a crack in the areas shown in Figure 2 of EASB 05A017. Pay particular attention to the area around the 4 spars (item b) of Figure 2 of EASB 05A017. An example of a crack is VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:43 Sep 24, 2015 Jkt 235001 shown in Figure 3 of EASB 05A017. For purposes of this AD, a sling cycle is defined as one landing with or without stopping the rotor or one external load-carrying operation; an external load-carrying operation occurs each time a helicopter picks up an external load and drops it off. (3) If there is a crack, before further flight, replace the junction frame. (g) Special Flight Permits Special flight permits are prohibited. (h) Alternative Methods of Compliance (AMOCs) (1) The Manager, Safety Management Group, FAA, may approve AMOCs for this AD. Send your proposal to: Robert Grant, Aviation Safety Engineer, Safety Management Group, Rotorcraft Directorate, FAA, 10101 Hillwood Pkwy, Fort Worth, TX 76177; telephone (817) 222–5110; email 9-ASWFTW-AMOC-Requests@faa.gov. (2) For operations conducted under a 14 CFR part 119 operating certificate or under 14 CFR part 91, subpart K, we suggest that you notify your principal inspector, or lacking a principal inspector, the manager of the local flight standards district office or certificate holding district office, before operating any aircraft complying with this AD through an AMOC. (i) Additional Information (1) Airbus Helicopters Service Bulletin No. EC130–53–029, Revision 0, dated February 20, 2015, which is not incorporated by reference, contains additional information about the subject of this AD. For service information identified in this AD, contact Airbus Helicopters, Inc., 2701 N. Forum Drive, Grand Prairie, TX 75052; telephone (972) 641–0000 or (800) 232–0323; fax (972) 641–3775; or at http://www.air bushelicopters.com/techpub. You may review a copy of the service information at the FAA, Office of the Regional Counsel, Southwest Region, 10101 Hillwood Pkwy, Room 6N–321, Fort Worth, TX 76177. (2) The subject of this AD is addressed in European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) AD No. 2015–0033–E, dated February 24, 2015. You may view the EASA AD on the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov in Docket No. FAA–2015–3970. (j) Subject Joint Aircraft Service Component (JASC) Code: 5302: Rotorcraft Tailboom. Issued in Fort Worth, Texas, on September 17, 2015. James A. Grigg, Acting Manager, Rotorcraft Directorate, Aircraft Certification Service. [FR Doc. 2015–24251 Filed 9–24–15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910–13–P PO 00000 Frm 00004 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Part 39 [Docket No. FAA–2011–0027; Directorate Identifier 2010–NM–127–AD] RIN 2120–AA64 Airworthiness Directives; The Boeing Company Airplanes Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT. ACTION: Supplemental notice of proposed rulemaking (SNPRM); reopening of comment period. AGENCY: SUMMARY: We are revising an earlier proposed airworthiness directive (AD) for The Boeing Company Model 777– 200 and –300 series airplanes, equipped with Rolls-Royce Model RB211–Trent 800 engines. The notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) proposed to require repetitive inspections of the thrust reverser (T/R) structure and sealant, and related investigative and corrective actions if necessary. The NPRM was prompted by reports of T/R events related to thermal damage of the T/R inner wall. This action revises the NPRM by proposing to add different repetitive inspections requirements for T/R halves with a thermal protective system installed. This action also revises the NPRM by proposing to require installation of serviceable T/R halves, which would terminate the repetitive inspections in this SNPRM. This SNPRM also proposes to revise the inspection or maintenance program by incorporating new airworthiness limitations. We are proposing this SNPRM to detect and correct a degraded T/R inner wall panel, which could lead to failure of the T/R and adjacent components and their consequent separation from the airplane, and which could result in a rejected takeoff (RTO) and cause asymmetric thrust and consequent loss of control of the airplane during reverse thrust operation. If a T/R inner wall overheats, separated components could cause structural damage to the airplane, damage to other airplanes, or possible injury to people on the ground. Since these actions impose an additional burden over that proposed in the NPRM, we are reopening the comment period to allow the public the chance to comment on these proposed changes. DATES: We must receive comments on this SNPRM by November 9, 2015. ADDRESSES: You may send comments, using the procedures found in 14 CFR E:\FR\FM\25SEP1.SGM 25SEP1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 80, Number 186 (Friday, September 25, 2015)]
[Proposed Rules]
[Pages 57742-57744]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2015-24251]



[[Page 57742]]

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DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION

Federal Aviation Administration

14 CFR Part 39

[Docket No. FAA-2015-3970; Directorate Identifier 2015-SW-006-AD]
RIN 2120-AA64


Airworthiness Directives Airbus Helicopters (Previously 
Eurocopter France)

AGENCY: Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT.

ACTION: Notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM).

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

SUMMARY: We propose to supersede airworthiness directive (AD) 2014-12-
51 for Airbus Helicopters (previously Eurocopter France) Model EC130B4 
and EC130T2 helicopters. AD 2014-12-51 currently requires repetitively 
inspecting the tailboom to Fenestron junction frame (junction frame) 
for a crack. This proposed AD would retain the requirements of AD 2014-
12-51, change the applicability from helicopters with certain hours 
time-in-service (TIS) to junction frames with certain hours TIS, and 
add a compliance time for sling cycles to the junction frame inspection 
interval. These proposed actions are intended to detect a crack and to 
prevent failure of the junction frame, which could result in loss of 
the Fenestron and subsequent loss of control of the helicopter.

DATES: We must receive comments on this proposed AD by November 24, 
2015.

ADDRESSES: You may send comments by any of the following methods:
     Federal eRulemaking Docket: Go to http://www.regulations.gov. Follow the online instructions for sending your 
comments electronically.
     Fax: 202-493-2251.
     Mail: Send comments to the U.S. Department of 
Transportation, Docket Operations, M-30, West Building Ground Floor, 
Room W12-140, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., Washington, DC 20590-0001.
     Hand Delivery: Deliver to the ``Mail'' address between 9 
a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays.

Examining the AD Docket

    You may examine the AD docket on the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov by searching for and locating Docket No. FAA-2015-
3970; or in person at the Docket Operations Office between 9 a.m. and 5 
p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. The AD docket 
contains this proposed AD, the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) 
AD, the economic evaluation, any comments received and other 
information. The street address for the Docket Operations Office 
(telephone 800-647-5527) is in the ADDRESSES section. Comments will be 
available in the AD docket shortly after receipt.
    For service information identified in this proposed AD, contact 
Airbus Helicopters, Inc., 2701 N. Forum Drive, Grand Prairie, TX 75052; 
telephone (972) 641-0000 or (800) 232-0323; fax (972) 641-3775; or at 
http://www.airbushelicopters.com/techpub. You may review service 
information at the FAA, Office of the Regional Counsel, Southwest 
Region, 10101 Hillwood Pkwy, Room 6N-321, Fort Worth, TX 76177.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Robert Grant, Aviation Safety 
Engineer, Safety Management Group, FAA, Rotorcraft Directorate, FAA, 
10101 Hillwood Pkwy, Fort Worth, TX 76177; email robert.grant@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 July 24, 2014, we issued AD 2014-12-51, Amendment 39-17921 (79 
FR 45335, August 5, 2014), which was sent previously as an Emergency AD 
to all known U.S. owners and operators of Airbus Helicopters Model 
EC130B4 and EC130T2 helicopters. AD 2014-12-51 applies to helicopters 
with 690 or more hours TIS and requires, within 10 hours TIS, dye-
penetrant inspecting certain areas of the junction frame for a crack. 
AD 2014-12-51 also requires, at intervals not exceeding 25 hours TIS, 
either repeating the dye-penetrant inspection or performing a borescope 
inspection of certain areas of the junction frame for a crack. If there 
is a crack, AD 2014-12-51 requires replacing the junction frame. Those 
actions are intended to detect a crack and to prevent failure of the 
junction frame, which could result in loss of the Fenestron and 
subsequent loss of control of the helicopter.
    AD 2014-12-51 was prompted by AD No. 2014-0145-E, dated June 6, 
2014, issued by EASA, which is the Technical Agent for the Member 
States of the European Union, to correct an unsafe condition on Airbus 
Helicopters Model EC130B4 and EC130T2 helicopters. EASA advises of two 
incidents of crack propagation through the junction frame that 
initiated in the lower right-hand side between the web and the flange 
where the lower spar of the tailboom is joined. EASA states the cracks 
were of a significant length and not visible from the outside of the 
helicopter. EASA advises that this condition, if not detected, could 
lead to structural failure, possibly resulting in Fenestron detachment 
and consequent loss of control of the helicopter. As a result, EASA AD 
No. 2014-0145-E required a one-time visual inspection of the junction 
frame for a crack and a repetitive borescope inspection of the junction 
frame for a crack.
    EASA revised AD No. 2014-0145-E with AD No. 2014-0145R1, dated June 
13, 2014. EASA AD No. 2014-0145R1 changes the compliance time by 
removing a calendar day requirement and by determining the time 
accumulated on the junction frame instead of on the helicopter. EASA AD 
No. 2014-0145R1 also allows the recurring inspection to be accomplished 
either by performing the borescope inspection or by repeating the 
visual inspection.

Actions Since AD 2012-12-51 Was Issued

    Since we issued AD 2014-12-51 (79 FR 45335, August 5, 2014), EASA 
issued AD No. 2015-0033-E dated February 24, 2015 (EAD 2015-0033-E), 
which supersedes AD No. 2014-0145-E and AD No. 2014-0145R1. EASA 
determined that an inspection interval defined in sling cycles is 
necessary in

[[Page 57743]]

addition to the existing flight hour inspection interval. EASA also 
acknowledges an alternative method to inspect from the outside of the 
tailboom. EASA AD No. 2015-0033-E therefore retains the previous 
inspection requirements of EASA AD No. 2014-0145R1 and allows for an 
alternate external visual inspection method, which can be accomplished 
by a pilot, in combination with the internal inspections.
    This NPRM would retain the dye penetrant and borescope inspections 
in AD 2014-12-51 but would revise the compliance times. We have 
determined that applicable helicopters are those with 690 hours TIS 
accumulated on the junction frame instead of on the helicopter, and 
that it is necessary to include an inspection interval defined in sling 
cycles.

FAA's Determination

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

Related Service Information Under 1 CFR Part 51

    We reviewed Airbus Helicopters Emergency Alert Service Bulletin No. 
05A017, Revision 2, dated February 20, 2015 (EASB 05A017), for Model 
EC130B4 and EC130T2 helicopters. EASB 05A017 describes alternate 
procedures for inspecting outside the tailboom for a crack at reduced 
inspection intervals in combination with the internal inspections at 
extended intervals. EASB 05A017 also specifies adding sling cycles to 
the existing flight hour inspection interval for helicopters that 
perform external load-carrying operations. EASA issued AD No. 2015-
0033-E mandating the requirements in EASB 05A017 to ensure the 
continued airworthiness of these helicopters.
    This service information is reasonably available because the 
interested parties have access to it through their normal course of 
business or by means identified in the Addresses Section of this 
proposed AD.

Other Related Service Information

    We have also reviewed Airbus Helicopters Service Bulletin No. 
EC130-53-029, Revision 0, dated February 20, 2015 (SB EC130-53-029), 
which contains procedures to cut out the skin and splice at the 
junction frame to facilitate the external inspection specified in EASB 
05A017.

Proposed AD Requirements

    This proposed AD would require:
     Before the junction frame reaches 700 hours TIS or within 
10 hours TIS, whichever comes later, removing the horizontal 
stabilizer, cleaning the junction frame, and dye-penetrant inspecting 
around the circumference of the junction frame for a crack, paying 
particular attention to the area around the 4 spars.
     Within 25 hours TIS or 390 sling cycles, whichever comes 
first, after the dye-penetrant inspection proposed by this AD, and 
thereafter at intervals not exceeding 25 hours TIS or 390 sling cycles, 
whichever comes first, either repeating the dye-penetrant inspection of 
this proposed AD or, if the area is clean, using a borescope, 
inspecting around the circumference of the junction frame for a crack.

Differences Between This Proposed AD and the EASA AD

    The EASA AD includes alternate compliance instructions for 
helicopters modified with a cut-out in production by Airbus Helicopters 
Modification 350A087421 or in service by compliance with SB EC130-53-
029. This proposed AD would not.

Interim Action

    We consider this proposed AD to be an interim action. If final 
action is later identified, we might consider further rulemaking then.

Costs of Compliance

    We estimate that this proposed AD would affect 208 helicopters of 
U.S. Registry. We estimate that operators may incur the following costs 
in order to comply with this AD. At an average labor rate of $85 per 
hour, dye-penetrant inspecting the junction frame would require 1 work-
hour, for a cost per helicopter of $85, and a total cost of $17,680 for 
the fleet, per inspection cycle. Borescope inspecting the junction 
frame would require .5 work-hour, for a cost per helicopter of $43 and 
a total cost of $8,944 for the fleet, per inspection cycle.
    If required, replacing the junction frame would require 50 work-
hours, and required parts would cost $60,000, for a cost per helicopter 
of $64,250.

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:

[[Page 57744]]

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 removing Airworthiness Directive (AD) 
2014-12-51, Amendment 39-17921 (79 FR 45335, August 5, 2014), and 
adding the following new AD:

Airbus Helicopters (previously Eurocopter France): Docket No. FAA-
2015-3970; Directorate Identifier 2015-SW-006-AD.

(a) Applicability

    This AD applies to Airbus Helicopters Model EC130B4 and EC130T2 
helicopters with a tailboom to fenestron junction frame (junction 
frame) that has 690 or more hours time-in-service (TIS), 
certificated in any category.

(b) Unsafe Condition

    This AD defines the unsafe condition as a crack in the junction 
frame. This condition could result in failure of the junction frame, 
which could result in loss of the Fenestron and subsequent loss of 
control of the helicopter.

(c) Affected ADs

    This AD supersedes AD 2014-12-51, Amendment 39-17921 (79 FR 
45335, August 5, 2014).

(d) Comments Due Date

    We must receive comments by November 24, 2015.

(e) 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.

(f) Required Actions

    (1) Before the junction frame reaches 700 hours TIS or within 10 
hours TIS, whichever occurs later, remove the horizontal stabilizer, 
clean the junction frame, and dye-penetrant inspect around the 
circumference of the junction frame for a crack in the areas shown 
in Figure 1 of Airbus Helicopters EC130 Emergency Alert Service 
Bulletin No. 05A017, Revision 2, dated February 20, 2015 (EASB 
05A017). Pay particular attention to the area around the 4 spars 
(item b) of Figure 1 of EASB 05A017. An example of a crack is shown 
in Figure 3 of EASB 05A017.
    (2) Within 25 hours TIS or 390 sling cycles, whichever occurs 
first after the inspection required by paragraph (f)(1) of this AD, 
and thereafter at intervals not exceeding 25 hours TIS or 390 sling 
cycles, whichever occurs first, either perform the actions of 
paragraph (f)(1) of this AD or, if the area is clean, using a 
borescope, inspect around the circumference of the junction frame 
for a crack in the areas shown in Figure 2 of EASB 05A017. Pay 
particular attention to the area around the 4 spars (item b) of 
Figure 2 of EASB 05A017. An example of a crack is shown in Figure 3 
of EASB 05A017. For purposes of this AD, a sling cycle is defined as 
one landing with or without stopping the rotor or one external load-
carrying operation; an external load-carrying operation occurs each 
time a helicopter picks up an external load and drops it off.
    (3) If there is a crack, before further flight, replace the 
junction frame.

(g) Special Flight Permits

    Special flight permits are prohibited.

(h) Alternative Methods of Compliance (AMOCs)

    (1) The Manager, Safety Management Group, FAA, may approve AMOCs 
for this AD. Send your proposal to: Robert Grant, Aviation Safety 
Engineer, Safety Management Group, Rotorcraft Directorate, FAA, 
10101 Hillwood Pkwy, Fort Worth, TX 76177; telephone (817) 222-5110; 
email 9-ASW-FTW-AMOC-Requests@faa.gov.
    (2) For operations conducted under a 14 CFR part 119 operating 
certificate or under 14 CFR part 91, subpart K, we suggest that you 
notify your principal inspector, or lacking a principal inspector, 
the manager of the local flight standards district office or 
certificate holding district office, before operating any aircraft 
complying with this AD through an AMOC.

(i) Additional Information

    (1) Airbus Helicopters Service Bulletin No. EC130-53-029, 
Revision 0, dated February 20, 2015, which is not incorporated by 
reference, contains additional information about the subject of this 
AD. For service information identified in this AD, contact Airbus 
Helicopters, Inc., 2701 N. Forum Drive, Grand Prairie, TX 75052; 
telephone (972) 641-0000 or (800) 232-0323; fax (972) 641-3775; or 
at http://www.airbushelicopters.com/techpub. You may review a copy 
of the service information at the FAA, Office of the Regional 
Counsel, Southwest Region, 10101 Hillwood Pkwy, Room 6N-321, Fort 
Worth, TX 76177.
    (2) The subject of this AD is addressed in European Aviation 
Safety Agency (EASA) AD No. 2015-0033-E, dated February 24, 2015. 
You may view the EASA AD on the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov in Docket No. FAA-2015-3970.

(j) Subject

    Joint Aircraft Service Component (JASC) Code: 5302: Rotorcraft 
Tailboom.

    Issued in Fort Worth, Texas, on September 17, 2015.
James A. Grigg,
Acting Manager, Rotorcraft Directorate, Aircraft Certification Service.
[FR Doc. 2015-24251 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am]
 BILLING CODE 4910-13-P