Airworthiness Directives; Airbus Airplanes, 58110-58113 [2017-26260]

Download as PDF 58110 Federal Register / Vol. 82, No. 236 / Monday, December 11, 2017 / Rules and Regulations DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Part 39 [Docket No. FAA–2017–0622; Product Identifier 2016–NM–192–AD; Amendment 39–19120; AD 2017–25–06] RIN 2120–AA64 Airworthiness Directives; Airbus Airplanes Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), Department of Transportation (DOT). ACTION: Final rule. AGENCY: We are adopting a new airworthiness directive (AD) for certain Airbus Model A318 and A319 series airplanes; Model A320–211, –212, –214, –231, –232, and –233 airplanes; and Model A321–111, –112, –131, –211, –212, –213, –231, and –232 airplanes. This AD was prompted by reports of a vertical strut penetrating through the cabin floor during an emergency water landing and on airframe ground contact at certain speeds/accelerations. This AD requires modification of the fuselage structure at a certain frame. We are issuing this AD to address the unsafe condition on these products. DATES: This AD is effective January 16, 2018. The Director of the Federal Register approved the incorporation by reference of certain publications listed in this AD as of January 16, 2018. ADDRESSES: For service information identified in this final rule, contact Airbus, Airworthiness Office–EIAS, 1 Rond Point Maurice Bellonte, 31707 Blagnac Cedex, France; telephone: +33 5 61 93 36 96; fax: +33 5 61 93 44 51; email: account.airworth-eas@ airbus.com; Internet: http:// www.airbus.com. You may view this referenced service information at the FAA, Transport Standards Branch, 1601 Lind Avenue SW., Renton, WA. For information on the availability of this material at the FAA, call 425–227–1221. It is also available on the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov by searching for and locating Docket No. FAA–2017– 0622. SUMMARY: sradovich on DSK3GMQ082PROD with RULES 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–2017– 0622; or in person at the Docket Management Facility between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. The AD docket VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:23 Dec 08, 2017 Jkt 244001 contains this AD, the regulatory evaluation, any comments received, and other information. The street address for the Docket Office (telephone: 800–647– 5527) is Docket 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: Sanjay Ralhan, Aerospace Engineer, International Section, Transport Standards Branch, FAA, 1601 Lind Avenue SW., Renton, WA 98057–3356; telephone: 425–227–1405; fax: 425– 227–1149. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Discussion We issued a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) to amend 14 CFR part 39 by adding an AD that would apply to certain Airbus Model A318 and A319 series airplanes; Model A320–211, –212, –214, –231, –232, and –233 airplanes; and Model A321–111, –112, –131, –211, –212, –213, –231, and –232 airplanes. The NPRM published in the Federal Register on June 23, 2017 (82 FR 28596) (‘‘the NPRM’’). The NPRM was prompted by reports of a vertical strut penetrating through the cabin floor during an emergency water landing and on airframe ground contact at certain speeds/accelerations. The NPRM proposed to require modification of the fuselage structure at frame (FR) 65. We are issuing this AD to prevent the central vertical strut at FR65 from penetrating through the cabin floor in certain conditions, which could lead to injury of occupants and delays during an emergency evacuation. The European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA), which is the Technical Agent for the Member States of the European Union, has issued EASA AD 2016–0212, dated October 25, 2016 (referred to after this as the Mandatory Continuing Airworthiness Information, or ‘‘the MCAI’’), to correct an unsafe condition for certain Airbus Model A318 and A319 series airplanes; Model A320–211, –212, –214, –231, –232, and –233 airplanes; and Model A321–111, –112, –131, –211, –212, –213, –231, and –232 airplanes. The MCAI states: In service occurrences were reported where, as a consequence [during an emergency water landing and] of an airframe ground contact above certified vertical speed/ vertical acceleration, the vertical strut at Frame (FR) 65 penetrated through the cabin floor. This condition, if not corrected, could lead to injury of occupants and/or delays during emergency evacuation. PO 00000 Frm 00014 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 To address this potential unsafe condition, Airbus developed mod 153724, a structural change which prevents the central vertical strut at FR65 to pass through the cabin floor, and issued Service Bulletin (SB) A320–53– 1262 to provide instructions for installation of this modification on aeroplanes in service. After SB A320–53–1262 was issued, incorrect MSN [manufacturer serial number] allocations and configuration definitions were identified in it. Consequently Airbus revised that SB, and in addition issued SB A320–53–1333 and SB A320–53–1334. For the reason described above, this [EASA] AD requires modification of the fuselage structure at FR65. You may examine the MCAI in the AD docket on the Internet at http:// www.regulations.gov by searching for and locating Docket No. FAA–2017– 0622. Comments We gave the public the opportunity to participate in developing this AD. The following presents the comments received on the NPRM and the FAA’s response to each comment. Request for Different Method of Compliance for Foam Tape United Airlines (UAL) requested that we include an exception to allow the use of a different foam tape that better meets the needs of its fleet. UAL mentioned that the purpose of the tape is to reduce vibration and prevent chafing from the floor panels, and that the location is considered a ‘‘wet’’ area of the aft cabin that is susceptible to corrosion. UAL also stated that the tape specified does not meet its corrosion prevention and control program (CPCP) standards, and that the tape can retain moisture and may not adequately seal between the floor panel and floor support structure. UAL indicated that protecting the floor beams from moisture ingress has been an ongoing effort on its fleet through the CPCP committee and that due to corrosion reports UAL uses a different foam tape on all floor support structure in the cabin ‘‘wet’’ areas. UAL pointed out that it has benefited from superior corrosion protection due to using the different foam tape and stressed its continual commitment to monitoring and evaluating new products and procedures for the aft cabin ‘‘wet’’ areas. UAL also requested that we provide an exception to the ‘‘RC’’ (Required for Compliance) specification associated with installation of the foam tape. We agree to include an exception for the reasons provided. We have added paragraph (h), ‘‘Service Information Exceptions,’’ to this AD and redesignated subsequent paragraphs accordingly. In paragraph (h)(1) of this E:\FR\FM\11DER1.SGM 11DER1 Federal Register / Vol. 82, No. 236 / Monday, December 11, 2017 / Rules and Regulations AD, we added an exception for using an alternative foam tape, in accordance with a method approved by the Manager, International Section, Transport Standards Branch, FAA; or EASA; or Airbus’s EASA Design Organization Approval (DOA). Request for Exception for Placard Installation at FR65 UAL also requested that we provide an exception to the ‘‘RC’’ specification associated with installation of the placard. UAL concurred with marking of modification areas to prevent demodification, but uses a different method (marking AD areas when there is high risk of de-modification, and denoting the applicable Engineering Authorization and/or AD). UAL stated that marking the modification area in accordance with the service information does not bring awareness to technicians and that the service information may not be readily available for reference. Additionally, UAL pointed out that because the modification is a complex alteration which cannot be easily returned to the original configuration, it considers the modification to be low risk of de-modification. UAL also pointed out that Airbus has identified illustrated parts catalog (IPC) and structural repair manual (SRM) publications affected in the specified service information and that the IPC changes will identify the proper configuration between pre- and postmodification accomplishment. UAL mentioned that excepting the placard marking on FR65 from the ‘‘RC’’ requirement will allow operators (if they choose) to mark their applicable Engineering Authorization and/or AD instead and that applying the placard does not affect the technical intent of the modification. We agree to include an exception for the reasons provided. In paragraph (h)(2) of this AD, we added an exception to specify that the referenced placard installation is not required by this AD. Request To Refer to Later Revisions of the Service Information American Airlines (AAL) requested that we delay issuance of the final rule until the manufacturer can release Revision 02 (we referred to Revision 01 in the NPRM) of Airbus Service Bulletin A320–53–1262. AAL pointed out that Revision 02 of Airbus Service Bulletin A320–53–1262 is expected to address certain discrepancies found during validation of the service information. UAL also requested that we verify that the required service information specified in the NPRM is at the latest revision level to prevent alternative method of compliance (AMOC) requests immediately following publication of the final rule. We have verified that the required service information specified in this AD is at the latest revision level. We do not consider that delaying this action until release of the planned service information is warranted, since Revision 02 of Airbus Service Bulletin A320–53– 1262 is not yet approved and we cannot allow future revisions of service information in this AD. Additionally, AAL did not provide any further details associated with the discrepancies discovered during validation. We have determined that using Revision 01 of Airbus Service Bulletin A320–53–1262 adequately addresses the identified unsafe condition. However, under the provisions of paragraph (i)(1) of this AD, we will consider requests for approval of an AMOC to allow the use of Revision 02 of Airbus Service Bulletin A320–53–1262 after issuance of the updated service information. We have not changed this AD in this regard. Conclusion We reviewed the relevant data, considered the comments received, and 58111 determined that air safety and the public interest require adopting this AD with the changes described previously and minor editorial changes. We have determined that these minor changes: • Are consistent with the intent that was proposed in the NPRM for correcting the unsafe condition; and • Do not add any additional burden upon the public than was already proposed in the NPRM. We also determined that these changes will not increase the economic burden on any operator or increase the scope of this AD. Related Service Information Under 1 CFR Part 51 Airbus has issued the following Airbus service information: • Airbus Service Bulletin A320–53– 1262, excluding Appendix 01 and including Appendix 02, Revision 01, dated July 29, 2016; • Airbus Service Bulletin A320–53– 1333, excluding Appendix 01 and including Appendix 02, dated July 29, 2016; and • Airbus Service Bulletin A320–53– 1334, excluding Appendix 01 and including Appendixes 02 and 03, dated July 29, 2016. The service information describes procedures for modifying the fuselage structure at FR65. These documents are distinct since they apply to different airplane configurations. This service information is reasonably available because the interested parties have access to it through their normal course of business or by the means identified in the ADDRESSES section. Costs of Compliance We estimate that this AD affects 1,123 airplanes of U.S. registry. We estimate the following costs to comply with this AD: ESTIMATED COSTS Action Labor cost Modification ............................ 18 work-hours × $85 per hour = $1,530 ................................ sradovich on DSK3GMQ082PROD with RULES 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. VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:23 Dec 08, 2017 Jkt 244001 Parts cost 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 PO 00000 Frm 00015 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 $16,600 Cost per product $18,130 Cost on U.S. operators $20,359,990 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. This AD is issued in accordance with authority delegated by the Executive Director, Aircraft Certification Service, as authorized by FAA Order 8000.51C. In accordance with that order, issuance E:\FR\FM\11DER1.SGM 11DER1 58112 Federal Register / Vol. 82, No. 236 / Monday, December 11, 2017 / Rules and Regulations of ADs is normally a function of the Compliance and Airworthiness Division, but during this transition period, the Executive Director has delegated the authority to issue ADs applicable to transport category airplanes to the Director of the System Oversight Division. Regulatory Findings We determined that 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 the DOT Regulatory Policies and Procedures (44 FR 11034, February 26, 1979); 3. Will not affect intrastate aviation in Alaska; 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. 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 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): ■ sradovich on DSK3GMQ082PROD with RULES 2017–25–06 Airbus: Amendment 39–19120; Docket No. FAA–2017–0622; Product Identifier 2016–NM–192–AD. (a) Effective Date This AD is effective January 16, 2018. (b) Affected ADs None. (c) Applicability This AD applies to the airplanes identified in paragraphs (c)(1), (c)(2), (c)(3), and (c)(4) of this AD, certificated in any category, all VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:23 Dec 08, 2017 Jkt 244001 manufacturer serial numbers, except those on which Airbus Modification 153724 was embodied in production. (1) Airbus Model A318–111, –112, –121, and –122 airplanes. (2) Airbus Model A319–111, –112, –113, –114, –115, –131, –132, and –133 airplanes. (3) Airbus Model A320–211, –212, –214, –231, –232, and –233 airplanes. (4) Airbus Model A321–111, –112, –131, –211, –212, –213, –231, and –232 airplanes. (d) Subject Air Transport Association (ATA) of America Code 53, Fuselage. (e) Reason This AD was prompted by reports of a vertical strut penetrating through the cabin floor during an emergency water landing and on airframe ground contact at certain speeds/ accelerations. We are issuing this AD to prevent the central vertical strut at frame (FR) 65 from penetrating through the cabin floor in certain conditions, which could lead to injury of occupants and delays during an emergency evacuation. (f) Compliance Comply with this AD within the compliance times specified, unless already done. (g) Modification Except as provided by paragraphs (h)(1) and (h)(2) of this AD: Within 72 months after the effective date of this AD, modify the fuselage structure at FR65, in accordance with the Accomplishment Instructions of the applicable service bulletin specified in paragraph (g)(1), (g)(2), or (g)(3) of this AD. (1) For Model A318 and A319 series airplanes; Model A320–211, –212, –214, –231, –232, and –233 airplanes; and Model A321–111, –112, –131, –211, –212, –213, –231, and –232 airplanes, as identified in Airbus Service Bulletin A320–53–1262, Revision 01, dated July 29, 2016: Airbus Service Bulletin A320–53–1262, excluding Appendix 01 and including Appendix 02, Revision 01, dated July 29, 2016. (2) For Model A320–211, –212, –214, –232, and –233 airplanes, as identified in Airbus Service Bulletin A320–53–1333, dated July 29, 2016: Airbus Service Bulletin A320–53– 1333, excluding Appendix 01 and including Appendix 02, dated July 29, 2016. (3) For Model A321–211, –213, and –231 airplanes as identified in Airbus Service Bulletin A320–53–1334, dated July 29, 2016: Airbus Service Bulletin A320–53–1334, excluding Appendix 01 and including Appendixes 02 and 03, dated July 29, 2016. (h) Service Information Exceptions (1) Where the service bulletin specified in paragraphs (g)(1), (g)(2), or (g)(3) of this AD specifies to use ABS5006 foam tape on the new floor support beam, this AD allows the installation of an alternative foam tape, in accordance with a method approved by the Manager, International Section, Transport Standards Branch, FAA; or the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA); or Airbus’s EASA Design Organization Approval (DOA). If approved by the DOA, the approval must include the DOA-authorized signature. PO 00000 Frm 00016 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 (2) Where the service bulletin specified in paragraphs (g)(1), (g)(2), or (g)(3) of this AD specifies to install a placard at FR65, that placard installation is not required by this AD. (i) Other FAA AD Provisions The following provisions also apply to this AD: (1) Alternative Methods of Compliance (AMOCs): The Manager, International Section, Transport Standards Branch, FAA, has the authority to approve AMOCs for this AD, if requested using the procedures found in 14 CFR 39.19. In accordance with 14 CFR 39.19, send your request to your principal inspector or local Flight Standards District Office, as appropriate. If sending information directly to the International Section, send it to the attention of the person identified in paragraph (j)(2) of this AD. Information may be emailed to: 9-ANM-116-AMOCREQUESTS@faa.gov. Before using any approved AMOC, notify your appropriate principal inspector, or lacking a principal inspector, the manager of the local flight standards district office/certificate holding district office. (2) Contacting the Manufacturer: For any requirement in this AD to obtain corrective actions from a manufacturer, the action must be accomplished using a method approved by the Manager, International Section, Transport Standards Branch, FAA; or EASA; or Airbus’s EASA DOA. If approved by the DOA, the approval must include the DOAauthorized signature. (3) Required for Compliance (RC): Except as specified in paragraph (h) of this AD, if any service information contains procedures or tests that are identified as RC, those procedures and tests must be done to comply with this AD; any procedures or tests that are not identified as RC are recommended. Those procedures and tests that are not identified as RC may be deviated from using accepted methods in accordance with the operator’s maintenance or inspection program without obtaining approval of an AMOC, provided the procedures and tests identified as RC can be done and the airplane can be put back in an airworthy condition. Any substitutions or changes to procedures or tests identified as RC require approval of an AMOC. (j) Related Information (1) Refer to Mandatory Continuing Airworthiness Information (MCAI) EASA AD 2016–0212, dated October 25, 2016, for related information. This MCAI may be found in the AD docket on the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov by searching for and locating Docket No. FAA–2017–0622. (2) For more information about this AD, contact Sanjay Ralhan, Aerospace Engineer, International Section, Transport Standards Branch, FAA, 1601 Lind Avenue SW., Renton, WA 98057–3356; telephone: 425– 227–1405; fax: 425–227–1149. (k) Material Incorporated by Reference (1) The Director of the Federal Register approved the incorporation by reference (IBR) of the service information listed in this paragraph under 5 U.S.C. 552(a) and 1 CFR part 51. E:\FR\FM\11DER1.SGM 11DER1 Federal Register / Vol. 82, No. 236 / Monday, December 11, 2017 / Rules and Regulations (2) You must use this service information as applicable to do the actions required by this AD, unless this AD specifies otherwise. (i) Airbus Service Bulletin A320–53–1262, excluding Appendix 01 and including Appendix 02, Revision 01, dated July 29, 2016. (ii) Airbus Service Bulletin A320–53–1333, excluding Appendix 01 and including Appendix 02, dated July 29, 2016. (iii) Airbus Service Bulletin A320–53– 1334, excluding Appendix 01 and including Appendixes 02 and 03, dated July 29, 2016. (3) For service information identified in this AD, contact Airbus, Airworthiness Office–EIAS, 1 Rond Point Maurice Bellonte, 31707 Blagnac Cedex, France; telephone: +33 5 61 93 36 96; fax: +33 5 61 93 44 51; email: account.airworth-eas@airbus.com; Internet: http://www.airbus.com. (4) You may view this service information at the FAA, Transport Standards Branch, 1601 Lind Avenue SW., Renton, WA. For information on the availability of this material at the FAA, call 425–227–1221. (5) You may view this service information that is incorporated by reference 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/cfr/ibrlocations.html. Issued in Renton, Washington, on November 16, 2017. Chris Spangenberg, Acting Director, System Oversight Division, Aircraft Certification Service. [FR Doc. 2017–26260 Filed 12–8–17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910–13–P DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY Coast Guard 33 CFR Part 117 [Docket No. USCG–2017–1072] Drawbridge Operation Regulation; Columbia River, Vancouver, WA Coast Guard, DHS. Notice of deviation from drawbridge regulations. AGENCY: ACTION: The Coast Guard has issued a temporary deviation from the operating schedule that governs the Burlington Northern Santa Fe (BNSF) Railway Bridge across the Columbia River, mile 105.6, at Vancouver, WA. The deviation is necessary to accommodate replacement gears, shafts and bearings. This deviation allows the bridge to remain in the closed-to-navigation position during maintenance activities. DATES: This deviation is effective from 7 a.m. on December 19, 2017 to 7 p.m. on December 21, 2017. sradovich on DSK3GMQ082PROD with RULES SUMMARY: VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:23 Dec 08, 2017 Jkt 244001 The docket for this deviation, USCG–2017–1072 is available at http://www.regulations.gov. Type the docket number in the ‘‘SEARCH’’ box and click ‘‘SEARCH.’’ Click on Open Docket Folder on the line associated with this deviation. ADDRESSES: If you have questions on this temporary deviation, call or email Mr. Steven Fischer, Bridge Administrator, Thirteenth Coast Guard District; telephone 206–220–7282, email d13-pfd13bridges@uscg.mil. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: BNSF requested that the BNSF Swing Bridge across the Columbia River, mile 105.6, remain closed to marine vessel traffic to install new swing gears, shafts and bearings. During this installation period, the swing span of the bridge will be in the closed-to-navigation position; however, the span may be opened for maritime emergencies, when an hour’s notice has been given, but any emergency opening will necessitate a time extension to the approved dates. The BNSF Swing Bridge, mile 105.6, provides 39 feet of vertical clearance above Columbia River Datum 0.0 while in the closed position. The subject bridge operates in accordance with 33 CFR 117.5. This deviation allows the swing span of the BNSF Railway Bridge across the Columbia River, mile 105.6, to remain in the closed-to-navigation position, and need not open for maritime traffic from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. on December 19, 2017, and 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. on December 21, 2017. The bridge shall operate in accordance to 33 CFR 117.5 at all other times. Waterway usage on this part of the Columbia River includes vessels ranging from large ships to commercial tug and tow vessels to recreational pleasure craft including cabin cruisers and sailing vessels. Vessels able to pass through the bridge in the closed-tonavigation position may do so at anytime. The bridge will be able to open for emergencies, if an hour’s notice is given, and there is no immediate alternate route for vessels to pass. The Coast Guard will also inform the users of the waterways through our Local and Broadcast Notices to Mariners of the change in operating schedule for the bridge so that vessels can arrange their transits to minimize any impact caused by the temporary deviation. In accordance with 33 CFR 117.35(e), the drawbridge must return to its regular operating schedule immediately at the end of the designated time period. This deviation from the operating regulations is authorized under 33 CFR 117.35. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: PO 00000 Frm 00017 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 58113 Dated: December 4, 2017. Steven M. Fischer, Bridge Administrator, Thirteenth Coast Guard District. [FR Doc. 2017–26573 Filed 12–8–17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 9110–04–P DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY Coast Guard 33 CFR Part 165 [Docket Number USCG–2017–0986] RIN 1625–AA00 Safety Zone; Lower Mississippi River, New Orleans, LA Coast Guard, DHS. Temporary final rule. AGENCY: ACTION: The Coast Guard is establishing a temporary safety zone for navigable waters on the Lower Mississippi River above Head of Passes between mile marker (MM) 94.0 and MM 95.0. This safety zone is needed to protect personnel, vessels and the marine environment from potential hazards associated with a fireworks display on January 6, 2018. This rulemaking will prohibit persons and vessels from being in the safety zone unless authorized by the Captain of the Port Sector New Orleans (COTP) or a designated representative. DATES: This rule is effective from 8:30 p.m. through 9:30 p.m. on January 6, 2018. SUMMARY: Documents mentioned in this preamble are part of docket USCG– 2017–0986. To view documents mentioned in this preamble as being available in the docket, go to http:// www.regulations.gov, type the docket number in the ‘‘SEARCH’’ box and click ‘‘SEARCH.’’ Click on Open Docket Folder on the line associated with this rulemaking. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: If you have questions about this rulemaking, call or email Lieutenant Commander (LCDR) Howard K. Vacco, Sector New Orleans, Waterways Management Division Chief, U.S. Coast Guard; telephone 504–365–2281, email Howard.K.Vacco@uscg.mil. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: ADDRESSES: I. Table of Abbreviations CFR Code of Federal Regulations COTP Captain of the Port Sector New Orleans DHS Department of Homeland Security FR Federal Register NPRM Notice of proposed rulemaking E:\FR\FM\11DER1.SGM 11DER1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 82, Number 236 (Monday, December 11, 2017)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Pages 58110-58113]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2017-26260]



[[Page 58110]]

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DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION

Federal Aviation Administration

14 CFR Part 39

[Docket No. FAA-2017-0622; Product Identifier 2016-NM-192-AD; Amendment 
39-19120; AD 2017-25-06]
RIN 2120-AA64


Airworthiness Directives; Airbus Airplanes

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

ACTION: Final rule.

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

SUMMARY: We are adopting a new airworthiness directive (AD) for certain 
Airbus Model A318 and A319 series airplanes; Model A320-211, -212, -
214, -231, -232, and -233 airplanes; and Model A321-111, -112, -131, -
211, -212, -213, -231, and -232 airplanes. This AD was prompted by 
reports of a vertical strut penetrating through the cabin floor during 
an emergency water landing and on airframe ground contact at certain 
speeds/accelerations. This AD requires modification of the fuselage 
structure at a certain frame. We are issuing this AD to address the 
unsafe condition on these products.

DATES: This AD is effective January 16, 2018.
    The Director of the Federal Register approved the incorporation by 
reference of certain publications listed in this AD as of January 16, 
2018.

ADDRESSES: For service information identified in this final rule, 
contact Airbus, Airworthiness Office-EIAS, 1 Rond Point Maurice 
Bellonte, 31707 Blagnac Cedex, France; telephone: +33 5 61 93 36 96; 
fax: +33 5 61 93 44 51; email: [email protected]; 
Internet: http://www.airbus.com. You may view this referenced service 
information at the FAA, Transport Standards Branch, 1601 Lind Avenue 
SW., Renton, WA. For information on the availability of this material 
at the FAA, call 425-227-1221. It is also available on the Internet at 
http://www.regulations.gov by searching for and locating Docket No. 
FAA-2017-0622.

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-2017-
0622; or in person at the Docket Management Facility between 9 a.m. and 
5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. The AD docket 
contains this AD, the regulatory evaluation, any comments received, and 
other information. The street address for the Docket Office (telephone: 
800-647-5527) is Docket 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: Sanjay Ralhan, Aerospace Engineer, 
International Section, Transport Standards Branch, FAA, 1601 Lind 
Avenue SW., Renton, WA 98057-3356; telephone: 425-227-1405; fax: 425-
227-1149.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: 

Discussion

    We issued a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) to amend 14 CFR 
part 39 by adding an AD that would apply to certain Airbus Model A318 
and A319 series airplanes; Model A320-211, -212, -214, -231, -232, and 
-233 airplanes; and Model A321-111, -112, -131, -211, -212, -213, -231, 
and -232 airplanes. The NPRM published in the Federal Register on June 
23, 2017 (82 FR 28596) (``the NPRM''). The NPRM was prompted by reports 
of a vertical strut penetrating through the cabin floor during an 
emergency water landing and on airframe ground contact at certain 
speeds/accelerations. The NPRM proposed to require modification of the 
fuselage structure at frame (FR) 65. We are issuing this AD to prevent 
the central vertical strut at FR65 from penetrating through the cabin 
floor in certain conditions, which could lead to injury of occupants 
and delays during an emergency evacuation.
    The European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA), which is the Technical 
Agent for the Member States of the European Union, has issued EASA AD 
2016-0212, dated October 25, 2016 (referred to after this as the 
Mandatory Continuing Airworthiness Information, or ``the MCAI''), to 
correct an unsafe condition for certain Airbus Model A318 and A319 
series airplanes; Model A320-211, -212, -214, -231, -232, and -233 
airplanes; and Model A321-111, -112, -131, -211, -212, -213, -231, and 
-232 airplanes. The MCAI states:

    In service occurrences were reported where, as a consequence 
[during an emergency water landing and] of an airframe ground 
contact above certified vertical speed/vertical acceleration, the 
vertical strut at Frame (FR) 65 penetrated through the cabin floor.
    This condition, if not corrected, could lead to injury of 
occupants and/or delays during emergency evacuation.
    To address this potential unsafe condition, Airbus developed mod 
153724, a structural change which prevents the central vertical 
strut at FR65 to pass through the cabin floor, and issued Service 
Bulletin (SB) A320-53-1262 to provide instructions for installation 
of this modification on aeroplanes in service. After SB A320-53-1262 
was issued, incorrect MSN [manufacturer serial number] allocations 
and configuration definitions were identified in it. Consequently 
Airbus revised that SB, and in addition issued SB A320-53-1333 and 
SB A320-53-1334.
    For the reason described above, this [EASA] AD requires 
modification of the fuselage structure at FR65.

    You may examine the MCAI in the AD docket on the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov by searching for and locating Docket No. FAA-2017-
0622.

Comments

    We gave the public the opportunity to participate in developing 
this AD. The following presents the comments received on the NPRM and 
the FAA's response to each comment.

Request for Different Method of Compliance for Foam Tape

    United Airlines (UAL) requested that we include an exception to 
allow the use of a different foam tape that better meets the needs of 
its fleet. UAL mentioned that the purpose of the tape is to reduce 
vibration and prevent chafing from the floor panels, and that the 
location is considered a ``wet'' area of the aft cabin that is 
susceptible to corrosion. UAL also stated that the tape specified does 
not meet its corrosion prevention and control program (CPCP) standards, 
and that the tape can retain moisture and may not adequately seal 
between the floor panel and floor support structure. UAL indicated that 
protecting the floor beams from moisture ingress has been an ongoing 
effort on its fleet through the CPCP committee and that due to 
corrosion reports UAL uses a different foam tape on all floor support 
structure in the cabin ``wet'' areas. UAL pointed out that it has 
benefited from superior corrosion protection due to using the different 
foam tape and stressed its continual commitment to monitoring and 
evaluating new products and procedures for the aft cabin ``wet'' areas.
    UAL also requested that we provide an exception to the ``RC'' 
(Required for Compliance) specification associated with installation of 
the foam tape.
    We agree to include an exception for the reasons provided. We have 
added paragraph (h), ``Service Information Exceptions,'' to this AD and 
redesignated subsequent paragraphs accordingly. In paragraph (h)(1) of 
this

[[Page 58111]]

AD, we added an exception for using an alternative foam tape, in 
accordance with a method approved by the Manager, International 
Section, Transport Standards Branch, FAA; or EASA; or Airbus's EASA 
Design Organization Approval (DOA).

Request for Exception for Placard Installation at FR65

    UAL also requested that we provide an exception to the ``RC'' 
specification associated with installation of the placard. UAL 
concurred with marking of modification areas to prevent de-
modification, but uses a different method (marking AD areas when there 
is high risk of de-modification, and denoting the applicable 
Engineering Authorization and/or AD). UAL stated that marking the 
modification area in accordance with the service information does not 
bring awareness to technicians and that the service information may not 
be readily available for reference. Additionally, UAL pointed out that 
because the modification is a complex alteration which cannot be easily 
returned to the original configuration, it considers the modification 
to be low risk of de-modification. UAL also pointed out that Airbus has 
identified illustrated parts catalog (IPC) and structural repair manual 
(SRM) publications affected in the specified service information and 
that the IPC changes will identify the proper configuration between 
pre- and post-modification accomplishment. UAL mentioned that excepting 
the placard marking on FR65 from the ``RC'' requirement will allow 
operators (if they choose) to mark their applicable Engineering 
Authorization and/or AD instead and that applying the placard does not 
affect the technical intent of the modification.
    We agree to include an exception for the reasons provided. In 
paragraph (h)(2) of this AD, we added an exception to specify that the 
referenced placard installation is not required by this AD.

Request To Refer to Later Revisions of the Service Information

    American Airlines (AAL) requested that we delay issuance of the 
final rule until the manufacturer can release Revision 02 (we referred 
to Revision 01 in the NPRM) of Airbus Service Bulletin A320-53-1262. 
AAL pointed out that Revision 02 of Airbus Service Bulletin A320-53-
1262 is expected to address certain discrepancies found during 
validation of the service information. UAL also requested that we 
verify that the required service information specified in the NPRM is 
at the latest revision level to prevent alternative method of 
compliance (AMOC) requests immediately following publication of the 
final rule.
    We have verified that the required service information specified in 
this AD is at the latest revision level. We do not consider that 
delaying this action until release of the planned service information 
is warranted, since Revision 02 of Airbus Service Bulletin A320-53-1262 
is not yet approved and we cannot allow future revisions of service 
information in this AD. Additionally, AAL did not provide any further 
details associated with the discrepancies discovered during validation. 
We have determined that using Revision 01 of Airbus Service Bulletin 
A320-53-1262 adequately addresses the identified unsafe condition. 
However, under the provisions of paragraph (i)(1) of this AD, we will 
consider requests for approval of an AMOC to allow the use of Revision 
02 of Airbus Service Bulletin A320-53-1262 after issuance of the 
updated service information. We have not changed this AD in this 
regard.

Conclusion

    We reviewed the relevant data, considered the comments received, 
and determined that air safety and the public interest require adopting 
this AD with the changes described previously and minor editorial 
changes. We have determined that these minor changes:
     Are consistent with the intent that was proposed in the 
NPRM for correcting the unsafe condition; and
     Do not add any additional burden upon the public than was 
already proposed in the NPRM.
    We also determined that these changes will not increase the 
economic burden on any operator or increase the scope of this AD.

Related Service Information Under 1 CFR Part 51

    Airbus has issued the following Airbus service information:
     Airbus Service Bulletin A320-53-1262, excluding Appendix 
01 and including Appendix 02, Revision 01, dated July 29, 2016;
     Airbus Service Bulletin A320-53-1333, excluding Appendix 
01 and including Appendix 02, dated July 29, 2016; and
     Airbus Service Bulletin A320-53-1334, excluding Appendix 
01 and including Appendixes 02 and 03, dated July 29, 2016.
    The service information describes procedures for modifying the 
fuselage structure at FR65. These documents are distinct since they 
apply to different airplane configurations. This service information is 
reasonably available because the interested parties have access to it 
through their normal course of business or by the means identified in 
the ADDRESSES section.

Costs of Compliance

    We estimate that this AD affects 1,123 airplanes of U.S. registry.
    We estimate the following costs to comply with this AD:

                                                 Estimated Costs
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                                     Cost per      Cost on U.S.
                Action                         Labor cost           Parts cost        product        operators
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Modification..........................  18 work-hours x $85 per          $16,600         $18,130     $20,359,990
                                         hour = $1,530.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

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.
    This AD is issued in accordance with authority delegated by the 
Executive Director, Aircraft Certification Service, as authorized by 
FAA Order 8000.51C. In accordance with that order, issuance

[[Page 58112]]

of ADs is normally a function of the Compliance and Airworthiness 
Division, but during this transition period, the Executive Director has 
delegated the authority to issue ADs applicable to transport category 
airplanes to the Director of the System Oversight Division.

Regulatory Findings

    We determined that 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 the DOT Regulatory Policies 
and Procedures (44 FR 11034, February 26, 1979);
    3. Will not affect intrastate aviation in Alaska; 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.

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):

2017-25-06 Airbus: Amendment 39-19120; Docket No. FAA-2017-0622; 
Product Identifier 2016-NM-192-AD.

(a) Effective Date

    This AD is effective January 16, 2018.

(b) Affected ADs

    None.

(c) Applicability

    This AD applies to the airplanes identified in paragraphs 
(c)(1), (c)(2), (c)(3), and (c)(4) of this AD, certificated in any 
category, all manufacturer serial numbers, except those on which 
Airbus Modification 153724 was embodied in production.
    (1) Airbus Model A318-111, -112, -121, and -122 airplanes.
    (2) Airbus Model A319-111, -112, -113, -114, -115, -131, -132, 
and -133 airplanes.
    (3) Airbus Model A320-211, -212, -214, -231, -232, and -233 
airplanes.
    (4) Airbus Model A321-111, -112, -131, -211, -212, -213, -231, 
and -232 airplanes.

(d) Subject

    Air Transport Association (ATA) of America Code 53, Fuselage.

(e) Reason

    This AD was prompted by reports of a vertical strut penetrating 
through the cabin floor during an emergency water landing and on 
airframe ground contact at certain speeds/accelerations. We are 
issuing this AD to prevent the central vertical strut at frame (FR) 
65 from penetrating through the cabin floor in certain conditions, 
which could lead to injury of occupants and delays during an 
emergency evacuation.

(f) Compliance

    Comply with this AD within the compliance times specified, 
unless already done.

(g) Modification

    Except as provided by paragraphs (h)(1) and (h)(2) of this AD: 
Within 72 months after the effective date of this AD, modify the 
fuselage structure at FR65, in accordance with the Accomplishment 
Instructions of the applicable service bulletin specified in 
paragraph (g)(1), (g)(2), or (g)(3) of this AD.
    (1) For Model A318 and A319 series airplanes; Model A320-211, -
212, -214, -231, -232, and -233 airplanes; and Model A321-111, -112, 
-131, -211, -212, -213, -231, and -232 airplanes, as identified in 
Airbus Service Bulletin A320-53-1262, Revision 01, dated July 29, 
2016: Airbus Service Bulletin A320-53-1262, excluding Appendix 01 
and including Appendix 02, Revision 01, dated July 29, 2016.
    (2) For Model A320-211, -212, -214, -232, and -233 airplanes, as 
identified in Airbus Service Bulletin A320-53-1333, dated July 29, 
2016: Airbus Service Bulletin A320-53-1333, excluding Appendix 01 
and including Appendix 02, dated July 29, 2016.
    (3) For Model A321-211, -213, and -231 airplanes as identified 
in Airbus Service Bulletin A320-53-1334, dated July 29, 2016: Airbus 
Service Bulletin A320-53-1334, excluding Appendix 01 and including 
Appendixes 02 and 03, dated July 29, 2016.

(h) Service Information Exceptions

    (1) Where the service bulletin specified in paragraphs (g)(1), 
(g)(2), or (g)(3) of this AD specifies to use ABS5006 foam tape on 
the new floor support beam, this AD allows the installation of an 
alternative foam tape, in accordance with a method approved by the 
Manager, International Section, Transport Standards Branch, FAA; or 
the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA); or Airbus's EASA Design 
Organization Approval (DOA). If approved by the DOA, the approval 
must include the DOA-authorized signature.
    (2) Where the service bulletin specified in paragraphs (g)(1), 
(g)(2), or (g)(3) of this AD specifies to install a placard at FR65, 
that placard installation is not required by this AD.

(i) Other FAA AD Provisions

    The following provisions also apply to this AD:
    (1) Alternative Methods of Compliance (AMOCs): The Manager, 
International Section, Transport Standards Branch, FAA, has the 
authority to approve AMOCs for this AD, if requested using the 
procedures found in 14 CFR 39.19. In accordance with 14 CFR 39.19, 
send your request to your principal inspector or local Flight 
Standards District Office, as appropriate. If sending information 
directly to the International Section, send it to the attention of 
the person identified in paragraph (j)(2) of this AD. Information 
may be emailed to: [email protected]. Before using any 
approved AMOC, notify your appropriate principal inspector, or 
lacking a principal inspector, the manager of the local flight 
standards district office/certificate holding district office.
    (2) Contacting the Manufacturer: For any requirement in this AD 
to obtain corrective actions from a manufacturer, the action must be 
accomplished using a method approved by the Manager, International 
Section, Transport Standards Branch, FAA; or EASA; or Airbus's EASA 
DOA. If approved by the DOA, the approval must include the DOA-
authorized signature.
    (3) Required for Compliance (RC): Except as specified in 
paragraph (h) of this AD, if any service information contains 
procedures or tests that are identified as RC, those procedures and 
tests must be done to comply with this AD; any procedures or tests 
that are not identified as RC are recommended. Those procedures and 
tests that are not identified as RC may be deviated from using 
accepted methods in accordance with the operator's maintenance or 
inspection program without obtaining approval of an AMOC, provided 
the procedures and tests identified as RC can be done and the 
airplane can be put back in an airworthy condition. Any 
substitutions or changes to procedures or tests identified as RC 
require approval of an AMOC.

(j) Related Information

    (1) Refer to Mandatory Continuing Airworthiness Information 
(MCAI) EASA AD 2016-0212, dated October 25, 2016, for related 
information. This MCAI may be found in the AD docket on the Internet 
at http://www.regulations.gov by searching for and locating Docket 
No. FAA-2017-0622.
    (2) For more information about this AD, contact Sanjay Ralhan, 
Aerospace Engineer, International Section, Transport Standards 
Branch, FAA, 1601 Lind Avenue SW., Renton, WA 98057-3356; telephone: 
425-227-1405; fax: 425-227-1149.

(k) Material Incorporated by Reference

    (1) The Director of the Federal Register approved the 
incorporation by reference (IBR) of the service information listed 
in this paragraph under 5 U.S.C. 552(a) and 1 CFR part 51.

[[Page 58113]]

    (2) You must use this service information as applicable to do 
the actions required by this AD, unless this AD specifies otherwise.
    (i) Airbus Service Bulletin A320-53-1262, excluding Appendix 01 
and including Appendix 02, Revision 01, dated July 29, 2016.
    (ii) Airbus Service Bulletin A320-53-1333, excluding Appendix 01 
and including Appendix 02, dated July 29, 2016.
    (iii) Airbus Service Bulletin A320-53-1334, excluding Appendix 
01 and including Appendixes 02 and 03, dated July 29, 2016.
    (3) For service information identified in this AD, contact 
Airbus, Airworthiness Office-EIAS, 1 Rond Point Maurice Bellonte, 
31707 Blagnac Cedex, France; telephone: +33 5 61 93 36 96; fax: +33 
5 61 93 44 51; email: [email protected]; Internet: 
http://www.airbus.com.
    (4) You may view this service information at the FAA, Transport 
Standards Branch, 1601 Lind Avenue SW., Renton, WA. For information 
on the availability of this material at the FAA, call 425-227-1221.
    (5) You may view this service information that is incorporated 
by reference 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/cfr/ibr-locations.html.

    Issued in Renton, Washington, on November 16, 2017.
Chris Spangenberg,
Acting Director, System Oversight Division, Aircraft Certification 
Service.
[FR Doc. 2017-26260 Filed 12-8-17; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4910-13-P