Proposed Establishment of Restricted Areas R-2201A, B, C, D, E, F, G, H, and J; Fort Greely, AK, 1316-1319 [2018-00371]

Download as PDF 1316 Federal Register / Vol. 83, No. 8 / Thursday, January 11, 2018 / Proposed Rules (e) Required Actions (1) Within 90 hours time-in-service: (i) For Airbus Helicopters Model AS350B, AS350B1, AS350B2, AS350B3, AS350BA, AS350C, AS350D, and AS350D1 helicopters, replace each aft evaporator blower motor connector with an Air Comm connector as depicted in Figures 2, 3, and 4 of Air Comm Service Bulletin (SB) SB AS350–1110014, Revision B, dated January 10, 2017, by using a Deutsch HDT–48–00 or an equivalent MIL– DTL22520 Type 1 crimping tool. (ii) For Airbus Helicopters Model EC130B4 helicopters, replace each aft evaporator blower motor connector with an Air Comm connector as depicted in Figures 2, 3, and 4 of Air Comm SB EC130–6204, Revision B, dated January 10, 2017, by using a Deutsch HDT–48–00 or an equivalent MIL–DTL22520 Type 1 crimping tool. (iii) For Bell Model 206A, 206B, 206L, 206L–1, 206L–3, and 206L–4 helicopters, replace each aft evaporator blower motor connector with an Air Comm connector as depicted in Figures 4, 5, and 6 of Air Comm SB 206–110414, Revision C, dated January 13, 2017, by using a Deutsch HDT–48–00 or an equivalent MIL–DTL22520 Type 1 crimping tool. (iv) For Bell Model 407 helicopters, replace each aft evaporator blower motor connector with an Air Comm connector as depicted in Figures 4, 5, and 6 of Air Comm SB 407– 110414, Revision D, dated January 13, 2017, by using a Deutsch HDT–48–00 or an equivalent MIL–DTL22520 Type 1 crimping tool. (2) After the effective date of this AD, do not install the following in any aft evaporator assembly P/Ns AS350–6202, EC130–6204–1, or EC130–6204–2; aft evaporator blower assembly P/Ns S–6078EC–15, S–6102EC–3, or S–6102EC–4; or aft condenser blower P/Ns S–7060EC–1, S–7060EC–2, S–7062EC–1 or S–7062EC–2: (i) Plug P/N 03–09–1022, 03–09–1032, and 03–09–1042; (ii) Socket P/N 02–09–1103 and 02–09– 1104; (iii) Receptacle P/N 03–09–2022, 03–09– 2032, and 03–09–2042; and (iv) Pin P/N 02–09–2103. sradovich on DSK3GMQ082PROD with PROPOSALS (f) Credit for Previous Actions Replacing the connectors before the effective date of this AD in accordance with Air Comm SB 206–110414, Revision A, dated June 3, 2016; SB AS350–111014 or SB EC130–6204, both Revision A and both dated July 6, 2016; SB 407–110414, Revision B, dated July 6, 2016; SB 206–110414, Revision B, dated January 10, 2017; or SB 407–110414, Revision C, dated January 10, 2017, is considered acceptable for compliance with the corresponding required actions specified in paragraph (e)(1) of this AD. (g) Alternative Methods of Compliance (AMOC) (1) The Manager, Denver ACO Branch, FAA, may approve AMOCs for this AD. Send your proposal to: Matthew Bryant, Aerospace Engineer, Denver ACO Branch, Compliance and Airworthiness Division, FAA, 26805 East 68th Ave., Room 214, Denver, CO 80249; telephone (303) 342–1092; email matthew.bryant@faa.gov. VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:00 Jan 10, 2018 Jkt 244001 (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. (h) Additional Information Air Comm SB 206–110414, Revision A, dated June 3, 2016; SB AS350–111014 or SB EC130–6204, both Revision A and both dated July 6, 2016; SB 407–110414, Revision B, dated July 6, 2016; SB 206–110414, Revision B, dated January 10, 2017; and SB 407– 110414, Revision C, dated January 10, 2017, which are not incorporated by reference, contain additional information about the subject of this AD. For service information identified in this AD, contact Air Comm Corporation, 1575 West 124th Ave., Westminster, CO 80234; telephone (303) 440–4075; email service@aircommcorp.com; website www.aircommcorp.com. You may review a copy of this service information at the FAA, Office of the Regional Counsel, Southwest Region, 10101 Hillwood Pkwy., Room 6N–321, Fort Worth, TX 76177. (i) Subject Joint Aircraft Service Component (JASC) Code: 2197, Air Conditioning System Wiring. Issued in Fort Worth, Texas, on January 2, 2018. Scott A. Horn, Deputy Director for Regulatory Operations, Compliance & Airworthiness Division, Aircraft Certification Service. [FR Doc. 2018–00177 Filed 1–10–18; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910–13–P DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Part 73 [Docket No. FAA–2016–9495; Airspace Docket No. 15–AAL–6] Proposed Establishment of Restricted Areas R–2201A, B, C, D, E, F, G, H, and J; Fort Greely, AK Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT. ACTION: Supplemental notice of proposed rulemaking (SNPRM). AGENCY: This SNPRM amends the notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) published in the Federal Register on March 6, 2017, that proposed to establish Restricted Areas R–2201A, B, C, D, E, F, G, H, and J; Fort Greely, AK. Based on comments to the NPRM, the FAA proposes reducing the lateral and vertical dimensions of the proposed restricted airspace. The modified restricted areas would be designated R– SUMMARY: PO 00000 Frm 00006 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 2201A, B, C, and D. This SNPRM seeks comment on the amended proposal. DATES: Comments must be received on or before February 26, 2018. ADDRESSES: Send comments on this proposal to the U.S. Department of Transportation, Docket Operations, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE, West Building Ground Floor, Room W12–140, Washington, DC 20590–0001; telephone: 1 (800) 647–5527, or (202) 366–9826. You must identify FAA Docket Number FAA–2016–9495 and Airspace Docket Number 15–AAL–6 at the beginning of your comments. You may also submit comments through the internet at http:// www.regulations.gov. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Kenneth Ready, Airspace Policy Group, Office of Airspace Services, Federal Aviation Administration, 800 Independence Avenue SW, Washington, DC 20591; telephone: (202) 267–8783. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Authority for This Rulemaking The FAA’s authority to issue rules regarding aviation safety is found in Title 49 of the United States Code. 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. This rulemaking is promulgated under the authority described in Subtitle VII, Part A, Subpart I, Section 40103. Under that section, the FAA is charged with prescribing regulations to assign the use of the airspace necessary to ensure the safety of aircraft and the efficient use of airspace. This regulation is within the scope of that authority as it would establish restricted airspace in the vicinity of Allen Army Airfield, to contain activities deemed hazardous to nonparticipating aircraft. Comments Invited Interested parties are invited to participate in this proposed rulemaking by submitting such written data, views, or arguments as they may desire. Comments that provide the factual basis supporting the views and suggestions presented are particularly helpful in developing reasoned regulatory decisions on the proposal. Comments are specifically invited on the overall regulatory, aeronautical, economic, environmental, and energy-related aspects of the proposal. Communications should identify both docket numbers (FAA Docket Number FAA–2016–9495 and Airspace Docket Number 15–AAL–6) and be submitted in triplicate to the Docket Management Facility (see ADDRESSES section for E:\FR\FM\11JAP1.SGM 11JAP1 Federal Register / Vol. 83, No. 8 / Thursday, January 11, 2018 / Proposed Rules address and phone number). You may also submit comments through the internet at http://www.regulations.gov. Commenters wishing the FAA to acknowledge receipt of their comments on this action must submit with those comments a self-addressed, stamped postcard on which the following statement is made: ‘‘Comments to FAA Docket Number FAA–2016–9495 and Airspace Docket Number 15–AAL–6.’’ The postcard will be date/time stamped and returned to the commenter. All communications received on or before the specified comment closing date will be considered before taking action on the proposed rule. The proposal contained in this action may be changed in light of comments received. All comments submitted will be available for examination in the public docket both before and after the comment closing date. A report summarizing each substantive public contact with FAA personnel concerned with this rulemaking will be filed in the docket. sradovich on DSK3GMQ082PROD with PROPOSALS Availability of NPRM’s An electronic copy of this document may be downloaded through the internet at http://www.regulations.gov. Recently published rulemaking documents can also be accessed through the FAA’s web page at http:// www.faa.gov/air_traffic/publications/ airspace_amendments/. You may review the public docket containing the proposal, any comments received and any final disposition in person in the Dockets Office (see ADDRESSES section for address and phone number) between 9:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. An informal docket may also be examined during normal business hours at the office of the Western Service Center, Operations Support Group, Federal Aviation Administration, 1601 Lind Ave. SW, Renton, WA 98057. History The FAA published a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) in the Federal Register for Docket No. FAA– 2016–9495 (82 FR 12529; March 6, 2017). The NPRM proposed to establish Restricted Areas R–2201A, B, C, D, E, F, G, H, and J; Fort Greely, AK. The NPRM proposed that the restricted areas would be configured in three layers, extending from the surface to Flight Level (FL) 220. R–2201A, B, and C would extend from the surface to but not including 6,000 feet MSL. Areas D, E, and F would extend from 6,000 feet MSL to but not including 15,000 feet MSL. Areas G, H, and J would VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:00 Jan 10, 2018 Jkt 244001 extend from 15,000 feet MSL to FL 220. The proposed time of designation for all of the above areas was ‘‘0700–1900 local time Monday–Friday; other times by NOTAM.’’ A total of 39 comments were received in response to the NPRM. All commenters expressed objections to the proposal. Discussion of Comments The comments received focused on three main areas of concern: Adverse impacts to general aviation flying under VFR; negative impacts on IFR aircraft; and general impacts to general aviation. Adverse Impacts to General Aviation Flying Under VFR Many commenters wrote that the proposed restricted areas would seriously impact access to a key VFR route to and from the Isabel Pass. This strategically important mountain pass connects interior and southcentral Alaska, offering one of the lowest terrain routes through the Alaska Range. Pilots regularly navigate using the Richardson Highway and Trans Alaska Pipeline to traverse the mountain valley with precipitous terrain on either side. Commenters contended that this major VFR corridor is already constrained by the R–2202 complex to the west. The proposed R–2201 complex would further narrow the airspace available to fly within the corridor. They believe that the prevalence of rapidly rising terrain, high winds, and rapidly changing weather conditions, combined with the narrow corridor, would pose a significant hazard to pilots by leaving them with little or no options for coping with adverse flight conditions. The FAA is proposing to modify the boundaries of the original proposal to provide a significantly larger VFR corridor along the Richardson Highway, and reduce the proposed altitude structure of the restricted area complex. This proposal also eliminates a section of the proposed restricted airspace that extended part way into the Buffalo MOA exclusion airspace. These measures should lessen the impact to VFR aircraft operations. Negative Impacts to IFR Aircraft Commenters pointed out that the proposed R–2201 complex would be located near two important IFR navigation aids (NAVAIDs): The Big Delta VORTAC (BIG), and the Delta Junction NDB (DJN). These NAVAIDs serve the following airways: A–2, B–25, V–444, V–481, V–515, T–226, and T– 232. For IFR aircraft flying below FL 180 to have access to Fairbanks from the east or south, they must use these airways. PO 00000 Frm 00007 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 1317 However, if the full proposed R–2201 complex was active, all routes to and from BIG and DJN would be unavailable. The commenters said that lack of access to these routes would negatively affect air traffic safety and efficiency and increase the cost for aircraft operators to fly in this area. The FAA is also proposing to reduce the proposed ceiling of the restricted area complex from FL 220 to 11,000 feet MSL, and limit the activation of the proposed restricted airspace between 6,000 feet MSL and 11,000 feet MSL to ‘‘by NOTAM 4 hours in advance.’’ This should provide greater availability of the airways noted above. Additionally, procedures would be incorporated into the Letters of Agreement/Procedure (LOA/LOP) between the controlling agency and the using agency to mitigate access issues. This would include activating only the minimum amount of airspace needed for the specific training mission, allowing the remaining airspace to be utilized by other users of the National Airspace System. General Impacts to General Aviation A number of commenters were concerned that the proposed times of activation for each restricted area would amount to 12 hours per weekday, as well as other times by NOTAM. The airspace below 6,000 feet MSL would be most affected since it could be active 60 percent of the time. The remaining altitude layers could be active 40 percent of the time. Due to the frequent occurrence of in-flight icing conditions in the area, the commenters pointed out that the availability of the low altitude portion of the R–2201 complex is extremely important. The potential high activation rate of the restricted areas could impact VFR and IFR aircraft. As noted above, the modified design, and proposed LOA/LOP procedures between the controlling and using agencies, should lessen impacts on general aviation. Additionally, for situations such as icing, if an aircraft requires an altitude that is within an active restricted area, the LOA/LOP would contain updated procedures that provide for coordination with the using agency to cease operations as necessary to provide for non-participating aircraft access through the SUA area. This provision would be similar to those already contained in LOAs/LOPs for other special use airspace areas in Alaska. Commenters also expressed concern about the proposed times of use for the complex; specifically, the provision allowing activation by NOTAM. One commenter stated that the lack of an advance notice requirement for E:\FR\FM\11JAP1.SGM 11JAP1 1318 Federal Register / Vol. 83, No. 8 / Thursday, January 11, 2018 / Proposed Rules sradovich on DSK3GMQ082PROD with PROPOSALS activation of the area by NOTAM could leave pilots with insufficient time for adequate flight planning, resulting in the need for an unforeseen circumnavigation of the area and/or having to divert to refuel. One commenter recommended that the times of use be changed to ‘‘as published by NOTAM issued 4 hours in advance of area activation.’’ The proposal has been modified so that NOTAMs for activating the restricted areas must be issued four hours in advance. In addition to the above measures, the Special Use Airspace Information Service (SUAIS) would be updated continually to provide transitioning pilots with the current status of the various special use airspace areas that could affect their flight. Differences From the NPRM In response to the public comments, the FAA has significantly revised the airspace proposal. The United States Army Alaska (USARAK) re-evaluated its training mission requirements and the amount of restricted airspace needed to contain the various hazardous training events. The original proposal consisted of nine restricted area subareas (R–2201A, B, C, D, E, F, G, H and J) extending in three layers from the surface up to FL 220. USARAK determined that it could meet its mission training goals with a scaled back restricted area complex consisting of four subareas (R–2201A, B, C, and D) instead of nine. Further, USARAK concluded that it could accomplish required training within a lower altitude structure that extends from the surface to 11,000 feet MSL, instead of FL 220. R–2201A and B would extend from the surface to but not including 6,000 feet MSL; while R– 2201C and D (which would overlie A and B, respectively) would extend from 6,000 feet MSL to 11,000 feet MSL. Most training would be accomplished in R– 2201A and B from the surface to 6,000 feet MSL. The originally proposed altitudes above 11,000 feet MSL up to FL 220 are, therefore, removed from the proposal. These changes reduce the amount of proposed restricted airspace by approximately 50 percent. To address the concerns about the narrow width of the VFR route to and from the Isabel Pass, the proposed western boundaries of the restricted areas were moved eastward, and the southern boundary moved northward, to provide a larger VFR corridor along the Richardson Highway as well additional clearance from the Donnelly Dome area. The proposed time of designation for the restricted areas has also been VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:00 Jan 10, 2018 Jkt 244001 revised. In the NPRM, the time of designation for all nine proposed subareas was ‘‘0700–1900 local time Monday–Friday; other times by NOTAM.’’ In the revised proposal, only R–2201A and B (which would extend from the surface to but not including 6,000 feet MSL) would have the specific published times of ‘‘0700–1900 local time Monday–Friday’’; as well as a provision to activate R–2201A and B at other times by a NOTAM issued 4 hours in advance. The time of designation for R–2201C and D (which would extend from 6,000 feet MSL to 11,000 feet MSL) would be limited to ‘‘By NOTAM 4 hours in advance’’ of the effective time. The proposed requirement that NOTAMs be issued 4 hours in advance was added in response to public comments that at least four hours advanced notice is needed to assist pilots with flight planning to help them avoid the need for reroutes or fuel diversions. These proposed modifications provide a larger VFR corridor along the Richardson Highway; reduce the overall proposed restricted airspace by approximately 50 percent; and lessen the potential for impact on both VFR and IFR operations. The Revised Proposal The FAA is proposing an amendment to Title 14, Code of Federal Regulations (14 CFR) part 73 to establish restricted areas R–2201A, B, C, and D; Fort Greely, AK. Restricted areas R–2201A and R– 2201C would overlie the Combined Arms Collective Training Facility (CACTF), and R–2201B and R–2201D would overlie the Battle Area Complex (BAX). R–2201A would be located approximately one nautical mile southeast of Allen Army Airfield. The designated altitudes would extend from the surface to but not including 6,000 feet MSL. The time of designation would be ‘‘0700–1900 local time Monday–Friday; other times by NOTAM 4 hours in advance.’’ R–2201B would be established immediately south of R–2201A. The northern boundary of R–2201B would be the same as the southern boundary of R–2201A. R–2201B would extend southward to latitude 63°49′33″ N. The designated altitudes would be from the surface to but not including 6,000 feet MSL. The time of designation would be ‘‘0700–1900 local time Monday–Friday; other times by NOTAM 4 hours in advance.’’ R–2201C would overlie R–2201A using the same lateral boundaries. The designated altitudes would be from 6,000 feet MSL to 11,000 feet MSL. The PO 00000 Frm 00008 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 time of designation would be ‘‘By NOTAM 4 hours in advance.’’ R–2201D would overlie R–2201B using the same lateral boundaries. The designated altitudes would be from 6,000 feet MSL to 11,000 feet MSL. The time of designation would be ‘‘By NOTAM 4 hours in advance.’’ A chart of the revised R–2201 proposal will be posted on the www.regulations.gov website (search: FAA–2016–9495). Regulatory Notices and Analyses The FAA has determined that this proposed regulation only involves an established body of technical regulations for which frequent and routine amendments are necessary to keep them operationally current. It, therefore: (1) Is not a ‘‘significant regulatory action’’ under Executive Order 12866; (2) is not a ‘‘significant rule’’ under Department of Transportation (DOT) Regulatory Policies and Procedures (44 FR 11034; February 26, 1979); and (3) does not warrant preparation of a regulatory evaluation as the anticipated impact is so minimal. Since this is a routine matter that will only affect air traffic procedures and air navigation, it is certified that this proposed rule, when promulgated, will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities under the criteria of the Regulatory Flexibility Act. Environmental Review This proposal will be subject to an environmental analysis in accordance with FAA Order 1050.1F, ‘‘Environmental Impacts: Policies and Procedures’’ prior to any FAA final regulatory action. List of Subjects in 14 CFR Part 73 Airspace, Prohibited areas, Restricted areas. The Proposed Amendment In consideration of the foregoing, the Federal Aviation Administration proposes to amend 14 CFR part 73 as follows: PART 73—SPECIAL USE AIRSPACE 1. The authority citation for part 73 continues to read as follows: ■ Authority: 49 U.S.C. 106(f), 106(g); 40103, 40113, 40120; E.O. 10854, 24 FR 9565, 3 CFR, 1959–1963 Comp., p. 389. § 73.22 Alaska [Amended] 2. § 73.22 is amended as follows: * * * * * ■ E:\FR\FM\11JAP1.SGM 11JAP1 Federal Register / Vol. 83, No. 8 / Thursday, January 11, 2018 / Proposed Rules R–2201A Fort Greely, AK [New] Boundaries. Beginning at lat. 63°58′45″ N, long. 145°35′06″ W; to lat. 63°58′08″ N, long. 145°35′05″ W; to lat. 63°57′06″ N, long. 145°30′15″ W; to lat. 63°57′11″ N, long. 145°39′25″ W; to lat. 63°58′48″ N, long. 145°39′25″ W; to the point of beginning. Designated altitudes. Surface to but not including 6,000 feet MSL. Time of designation. 0700–1900 local time Monday–Friday; other times by NOTAM 4 hours in advance. Controlling agency. FAA, Anchorage ARTCC. Using agency. U.S. Army, AK (USARAK), Commanding General, Joint Base ElmendorfRichardson (JBER), AK. R–2201B Fort Greely, AK [New] Boundaries. Beginning at lat. 63°57′06″ N, long. 145°30′15″ W; thence clockwise along a 6.3–NM radius of Allen AAF; to lat. 63°56′14″ N, long. 145°31′17″ W; to lat. 63°54′54″ N, long. 145°26′55″ W; thence south along Granite Creek; to lat. 63°49′36″ N, long. 145°34′53″ W; to lat. 63°49′36″ N, long. 145°40′45″ W; thence north along the west bank of Jarvis Creek; to lat. 63°52′14″ N, long. 145°41′49″ W; to lat. 63°52′56″ N, long. 145°42′52″ W; to lat. 63°55′01″ N, long. 145°42′52″ W; to lat. 63°56′20″ N, long. 145°39′26″ W; to lat. 63°57′11″ N, long. 145°39′25″ W; to the point of beginning. Designated altitudes. Surface to but not including 6,000 feet MSL. Time of designation. 0700–1900 local time Monday–Friday; other times by NOTAM 4 hours in advance. Controlling agency. FAA, Anchorage ARTCC. Using agency. U.S. Army, AK (USARAK), Commanding General, Joint Base ElmendorfRichardson (JBER), AK. R–2201C sradovich on DSK3GMQ082PROD with PROPOSALS Fort Greely, AK [New] Boundaries. Beginning at lat. 63°58′45″ N, long. 145°35′06″ W; to lat. 63°58′08″ N, long. 145°35′05″ W; to lat. 63°57′06″ N, long. 145°30′15″ W; to lat. 63°57′11″ N, long. 145°39′25″ W; to lat. 63°58′48″ N, long. 145°39′25″ W; to the point of beginning. Designated altitudes. 6,000 feet MSL to 11,000 feet MSL. Time of designation. By NOTAM 4 hours in advance. Controlling agency. FAA, Anchorage ARTCC. Using agency. U.S. Army, AK (USARAK), Commanding General, Joint Base ElmendorfRichardson, AK (JBER), AK. R–2201D Fort Greely, AK [New] Boundaries. Beginning at lat. 63°57′06″ N, long. 145°30′15″ W; thence clockwise along a 6.3–NM radius of Allen AAF; to lat. 63°56′14″ N, long. 145°31′17″ W; to lat. 63°54′54″ N, long. 145°26′55″ W; thence south along Granite Creek; to lat. 63°49′36″ N, long. 145°34′53″ W; to lat. 63°49′36″ N, long. 145°40′45″ W; thence north along the west bank of Jarvis Creek; to lat. 63°52′14″ N, long. 145°41′49″ W; to lat. 63°52′56″ N, long. 145°42′52″ W; to lat. 63°55′01″ N, long. 145°42′52″ W; to lat. 63°56′20″ N, long. 145°39′26″ W; to lat. 63°57′11″ N, long. 145°39′25″ W; to the point of beginning. VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:00 Jan 10, 2018 Jkt 244001 Designated altitudes. 6,000 feet MSL to 11,000 feet MSL. Time of designation. By NOTAM 4 hours in advance. Controlling agency. FAA, Anchorage ARTCC. Using agency. U.S. Army, AK (USARAK), Commanding General, Joint Base ElmendorfRichardson (JBER), AK. Issued in Washington, DC, on January 3, 2018. Rodger A. Dean Jr., Manager, Airspace Policy Group. [FR Doc. 2018–00371 Filed 1–10–18; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910–13–P DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Part 73 [Docket No. FAA–2017–1109; Airspace Docket No. 17–ASO–22] Proposed Amendment for Restricted Area R–4403A; Stennis Space Center, MS Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT. ACTION: Notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM). AGENCY: This action proposes to amend the time of designation for restricted area R–4403A, Stennis Space Center, MS, from ‘‘Intermittent, 1000 to 0300 local time, as activated by NOTAM at least 24 hours in advance,’’ to ‘‘Intermittent by NOTAM at least 24 hours in advance.’’ The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) requested the change to meet requirements of the Space Launch System (SLS) Core Stage test program. DATES: Comments must be received on or before February 26, 2018. ADDRESSES: Send comments on this proposal to the U.S. Department of Transportation, Docket Operations, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE, West Building Ground Floor, Room W12–140, Washington, DC 20590; telephone: 1 (800) 647–5527, or (202) 366–9826. You must identify FAA Docket No. FAA– 2017–1109 and Airspace Docket No. 17– ASO–22, at the beginning of your comments. You may also submit comments through the internet at http:// www.regulations.gov. Comments on environmental and land use aspects should be directed to: Mr. David Lorance, P.E., Center Environmental Officer, Center Operations Directorate, NASA Stennis Space Center, Roy S. Estess Building 1100, Mail Code RA02, Stennis Space Center, MS 39529–6000. SUMMARY: PO 00000 Frm 00009 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 1319 Paul Gallant, Airspace Policy Group, Office of Airspace Services, Federal Aviation Administration, 800 Independence Avenue SW, Washington, DC 20591; telephone: (202) 267–8783. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Authority for This Rulemaking The FAA’s authority to issue rules regarding aviation safety is found in Title 49 of the United States Code. 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. This rulemaking is promulgated under the authority described in Subtitle VII, Part A, Subpart I, Section 40103. Under that section, the FAA is charged with prescribing regulations to assign the use of the airspace necessary to ensure the safety of aircraft and the efficient use of airspace. This regulation is within the scope of that authority as it would support a change in the time of designation for restricted area R–4403A, Stennis Space Center, MS, to accommodate NASA rocket engine test activities. Comments Invited Interested parties are invited to participate in this proposed rulemaking by submitting such written data, views, or arguments as they may desire. Comments that provide the factual basis supporting the views and suggestions presented are particularly helpful in developing reasoned regulatory decisions on the proposal. Comments are specifically invited on the overall regulatory, aeronautical, economic, environmental, and energy-related aspects of the proposal. Communications should identify both docket numbers (FAA Docket No. FAA– 2017–1109 and Airspace Docket No. 17– ASO–22) and be submitted in triplicate to the Docket Office at the address listed above. You may also submit comments through the internet at www.regulations.gov. Commenters wishing the FAA to acknowledge receipt of their comments on this action must submit with those comments a self-addressed, stamped postcard on which the following statement is made: ‘‘Comments to FAA Docket No. FAA–2017–1109 and Airspace Docket No. 17–ASO–22.’’ The postcard will be date/time stamped and returned to the commenter. All communications received on or before the specified closing date for comments will be considered before taking action on the proposed rule. The proposal contained in this action may E:\FR\FM\11JAP1.SGM 11JAP1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 83, Number 8 (Thursday, January 11, 2018)]
[Proposed Rules]
[Pages 1316-1319]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2018-00371]


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DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION

Federal Aviation Administration

14 CFR Part 73

[Docket No. FAA-2016-9495; Airspace Docket No. 15-AAL-6]


Proposed Establishment of Restricted Areas R-2201A, B, C, D, E, 
F, G, H, and J; Fort Greely, AK

AGENCY: Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT.

ACTION: Supplemental notice of proposed rulemaking (SNPRM).

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

SUMMARY: This SNPRM amends the notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) 
published in the Federal Register on March 6, 2017, that proposed to 
establish Restricted Areas R-2201A, B, C, D, E, F, G, H, and J; Fort 
Greely, AK. Based on comments to the NPRM, the FAA proposes reducing 
the lateral and vertical dimensions of the proposed restricted 
airspace. The modified restricted areas would be designated R-2201A, B, 
C, and D. This SNPRM seeks comment on the amended proposal.

DATES: Comments must be received on or before February 26, 2018.

ADDRESSES: Send comments on this proposal to the U.S. Department of 
Transportation, Docket Operations, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE, West 
Building Ground Floor, Room W12-140, Washington, DC 20590-0001; 
telephone: 1 (800) 647-5527, or (202) 366-9826. You must identify FAA 
Docket Number FAA-2016-9495 and Airspace Docket Number 15-AAL-6 at the 
beginning of your comments. You may also submit comments through the 
internet at http://www.regulations.gov.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Kenneth Ready, Airspace Policy Group, 
Office of Airspace Services, Federal Aviation Administration, 800 
Independence Avenue SW, Washington, DC 20591; telephone: (202) 267-
8783.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Authority for This Rulemaking

    The FAA's authority to issue rules regarding aviation safety is 
found in Title 49 of the United States Code. 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. This rulemaking is promulgated under the authority described 
in Subtitle VII, Part A, Subpart I, Section 40103. Under that section, 
the FAA is charged with prescribing regulations to assign the use of 
the airspace necessary to ensure the safety of aircraft and the 
efficient use of airspace. This regulation is within the scope of that 
authority as it would establish restricted airspace in the vicinity of 
Allen Army Airfield, to contain activities deemed hazardous to 
nonparticipating aircraft.

Comments Invited

    Interested parties are invited to participate in this proposed 
rulemaking by submitting such written data, views, or arguments as they 
may desire. Comments that provide the factual basis supporting the 
views and suggestions presented are particularly helpful in developing 
reasoned regulatory decisions on the proposal. Comments are 
specifically invited on the overall regulatory, aeronautical, economic, 
environmental, and energy-related aspects of the proposal.
    Communications should identify both docket numbers (FAA Docket 
Number FAA-2016-9495 and Airspace Docket Number 15-AAL-6) and be 
submitted in triplicate to the Docket Management Facility (see 
ADDRESSES section for

[[Page 1317]]

address and phone number). You may also submit comments through the 
internet at http://www.regulations.gov.
    Commenters wishing the FAA to acknowledge receipt of their comments 
on this action must submit with those comments a self-addressed, 
stamped postcard on which the following statement is made: ``Comments 
to FAA Docket Number FAA-2016-9495 and Airspace Docket Number 15-AAL-
6.'' The postcard will be date/time stamped and returned to the 
commenter.
    All communications received on or before the specified comment 
closing date will be considered before taking action on the proposed 
rule. The proposal contained in this action may be changed in light of 
comments received. All comments submitted will be available for 
examination in the public docket both before and after the comment 
closing date. A report summarizing each substantive public contact with 
FAA personnel concerned with this rulemaking will be filed in the 
docket.

Availability of NPRM's

    An electronic copy of this document may be downloaded through the 
internet at http://www.regulations.gov. Recently published rulemaking 
documents can also be accessed through the FAA's web page at http://www.faa.gov/air_traffic/publications/airspace_amendments/.
    You may review the public docket containing the proposal, any 
comments received and any final disposition in person in the Dockets 
Office (see ADDRESSES section for address and phone number) between 
9:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal 
holidays. An informal docket may also be examined during normal 
business hours at the office of the Western Service Center, Operations 
Support Group, Federal Aviation Administration, 1601 Lind Ave. SW, 
Renton, WA 98057.

History

    The FAA published a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) in the 
Federal Register for Docket No. FAA-2016-9495 (82 FR 12529; March 6, 
2017). The NPRM proposed to establish Restricted Areas R-2201A, B, C, 
D, E, F, G, H, and J; Fort Greely, AK.
    The NPRM proposed that the restricted areas would be configured in 
three layers, extending from the surface to Flight Level (FL) 220. R-
2201A, B, and C would extend from the surface to but not including 
6,000 feet MSL. Areas D, E, and F would extend from 6,000 feet MSL to 
but not including 15,000 feet MSL. Areas G, H, and J would extend from 
15,000 feet MSL to FL 220. The proposed time of designation for all of 
the above areas was ``0700-1900 local time Monday-Friday; other times 
by NOTAM.''
    A total of 39 comments were received in response to the NPRM. All 
commenters expressed objections to the proposal.

Discussion of Comments

    The comments received focused on three main areas of concern: 
Adverse impacts to general aviation flying under VFR; negative impacts 
on IFR aircraft; and general impacts to general aviation.

Adverse Impacts to General Aviation Flying Under VFR

    Many commenters wrote that the proposed restricted areas would 
seriously impact access to a key VFR route to and from the Isabel Pass. 
This strategically important mountain pass connects interior and 
southcentral Alaska, offering one of the lowest terrain routes through 
the Alaska Range. Pilots regularly navigate using the Richardson 
Highway and Trans Alaska Pipeline to traverse the mountain valley with 
precipitous terrain on either side. Commenters contended that this 
major VFR corridor is already constrained by the R-2202 complex to the 
west. The proposed R-2201 complex would further narrow the airspace 
available to fly within the corridor. They believe that the prevalence 
of rapidly rising terrain, high winds, and rapidly changing weather 
conditions, combined with the narrow corridor, would pose a significant 
hazard to pilots by leaving them with little or no options for coping 
with adverse flight conditions.
    The FAA is proposing to modify the boundaries of the original 
proposal to provide a significantly larger VFR corridor along the 
Richardson Highway, and reduce the proposed altitude structure of the 
restricted area complex. This proposal also eliminates a section of the 
proposed restricted airspace that extended part way into the Buffalo 
MOA exclusion airspace. These measures should lessen the impact to VFR 
aircraft operations.

Negative Impacts to IFR Aircraft

    Commenters pointed out that the proposed R-2201 complex would be 
located near two important IFR navigation aids (NAVAIDs): The Big Delta 
VORTAC (BIG), and the Delta Junction NDB (DJN). These NAVAIDs serve the 
following airways: A-2, B-25, V-444, V-481, V-515, T-226, and T-232. 
For IFR aircraft flying below FL 180 to have access to Fairbanks from 
the east or south, they must use these airways. However, if the full 
proposed R-2201 complex was active, all routes to and from BIG and DJN 
would be unavailable. The commenters said that lack of access to these 
routes would negatively affect air traffic safety and efficiency and 
increase the cost for aircraft operators to fly in this area.
    The FAA is also proposing to reduce the proposed ceiling of the 
restricted area complex from FL 220 to 11,000 feet MSL, and limit the 
activation of the proposed restricted airspace between 6,000 feet MSL 
and 11,000 feet MSL to ``by NOTAM 4 hours in advance.'' This should 
provide greater availability of the airways noted above. Additionally, 
procedures would be incorporated into the Letters of Agreement/
Procedure (LOA/LOP) between the controlling agency and the using agency 
to mitigate access issues. This would include activating only the 
minimum amount of airspace needed for the specific training mission, 
allowing the remaining airspace to be utilized by other users of the 
National Airspace System.

General Impacts to General Aviation

    A number of commenters were concerned that the proposed times of 
activation for each restricted area would amount to 12 hours per 
weekday, as well as other times by NOTAM. The airspace below 6,000 feet 
MSL would be most affected since it could be active 60 percent of the 
time. The remaining altitude layers could be active 40 percent of the 
time. Due to the frequent occurrence of in-flight icing conditions in 
the area, the commenters pointed out that the availability of the low 
altitude portion of the R-2201 complex is extremely important. The 
potential high activation rate of the restricted areas could impact VFR 
and IFR aircraft.
    As noted above, the modified design, and proposed LOA/LOP 
procedures between the controlling and using agencies, should lessen 
impacts on general aviation. Additionally, for situations such as 
icing, if an aircraft requires an altitude that is within an active 
restricted area, the LOA/LOP would contain updated procedures that 
provide for coordination with the using agency to cease operations as 
necessary to provide for non-participating aircraft access through the 
SUA area. This provision would be similar to those already contained in 
LOAs/LOPs for other special use airspace areas in Alaska.
    Commenters also expressed concern about the proposed times of use 
for the complex; specifically, the provision allowing activation by 
NOTAM. One commenter stated that the lack of an advance notice 
requirement for

[[Page 1318]]

activation of the area by NOTAM could leave pilots with insufficient 
time for adequate flight planning, resulting in the need for an 
unforeseen circumnavigation of the area and/or having to divert to 
refuel. One commenter recommended that the times of use be changed to 
``as published by NOTAM issued 4 hours in advance of area activation.''
    The proposal has been modified so that NOTAMs for activating the 
restricted areas must be issued four hours in advance.
    In addition to the above measures, the Special Use Airspace 
Information Service (SUAIS) would be updated continually to provide 
transitioning pilots with the current status of the various special use 
airspace areas that could affect their flight.

Differences From the NPRM

    In response to the public comments, the FAA has significantly 
revised the airspace proposal. The United States Army Alaska (USARAK) 
re-evaluated its training mission requirements and the amount of 
restricted airspace needed to contain the various hazardous training 
events.
    The original proposal consisted of nine restricted area subareas 
(R-2201A, B, C, D, E, F, G, H and J) extending in three layers from the 
surface up to FL 220. USARAK determined that it could meet its mission 
training goals with a scaled back restricted area complex consisting of 
four subareas (R-2201A, B, C, and D) instead of nine.
    Further, USARAK concluded that it could accomplish required 
training within a lower altitude structure that extends from the 
surface to 11,000 feet MSL, instead of FL 220. R-2201A and B would 
extend from the surface to but not including 6,000 feet MSL; while R-
2201C and D (which would overlie A and B, respectively) would extend 
from 6,000 feet MSL to 11,000 feet MSL. Most training would be 
accomplished in R-2201A and B from the surface to 6,000 feet MSL. The 
originally proposed altitudes above 11,000 feet MSL up to FL 220 are, 
therefore, removed from the proposal. These changes reduce the amount 
of proposed restricted airspace by approximately 50 percent.
    To address the concerns about the narrow width of the VFR route to 
and from the Isabel Pass, the proposed western boundaries of the 
restricted areas were moved eastward, and the southern boundary moved 
northward, to provide a larger VFR corridor along the Richardson 
Highway as well additional clearance from the Donnelly Dome area.
    The proposed time of designation for the restricted areas has also 
been revised. In the NPRM, the time of designation for all nine 
proposed subareas was ``0700-1900 local time Monday-Friday; other times 
by NOTAM.'' In the revised proposal, only R-2201A and B (which would 
extend from the surface to but not including 6,000 feet MSL) would have 
the specific published times of ``0700-1900 local time Monday-Friday''; 
as well as a provision to activate R-2201A and B at other times by a 
NOTAM issued 4 hours in advance. The time of designation for R-2201C 
and D (which would extend from 6,000 feet MSL to 11,000 feet MSL) would 
be limited to ``By NOTAM 4 hours in advance'' of the effective time. 
The proposed requirement that NOTAMs be issued 4 hours in advance was 
added in response to public comments that at least four hours advanced 
notice is needed to assist pilots with flight planning to help them 
avoid the need for reroutes or fuel diversions.
    These proposed modifications provide a larger VFR corridor along 
the Richardson Highway; reduce the overall proposed restricted airspace 
by approximately 50 percent; and lessen the potential for impact on 
both VFR and IFR operations.

The Revised Proposal

    The FAA is proposing an amendment to Title 14, Code of Federal 
Regulations (14 CFR) part 73 to establish restricted areas R-2201A, B, 
C, and D; Fort Greely, AK. Restricted areas R-2201A and R-2201C would 
overlie the Combined Arms Collective Training Facility (CACTF), and R-
2201B and R-2201D would overlie the Battle Area Complex (BAX).
    R-2201A would be located approximately one nautical mile southeast 
of Allen Army Airfield. The designated altitudes would extend from the 
surface to but not including 6,000 feet MSL. The time of designation 
would be ``0700-1900 local time Monday-Friday; other times by NOTAM 4 
hours in advance.''
    R-2201B would be established immediately south of R-2201A. The 
northern boundary of R-2201B would be the same as the southern boundary 
of R-2201A. R-2201B would extend southward to latitude 63[deg]49'33'' 
N. The designated altitudes would be from the surface to but not 
including 6,000 feet MSL. The time of designation would be ``0700-1900 
local time Monday-Friday; other times by NOTAM 4 hours in advance.''
    R-2201C would overlie R-2201A using the same lateral boundaries. 
The designated altitudes would be from 6,000 feet MSL to 11,000 feet 
MSL. The time of designation would be ``By NOTAM 4 hours in advance.''
    R-2201D would overlie R-2201B using the same lateral boundaries. 
The designated altitudes would be from 6,000 feet MSL to 11,000 feet 
MSL. The time of designation would be ``By NOTAM 4 hours in advance.''
    A chart of the revised R-2201 proposal will be posted on the 
www.regulations.gov website (search: FAA-2016-9495).

Regulatory Notices and Analyses

    The FAA has determined that this proposed regulation only involves 
an established body of technical regulations for which frequent and 
routine amendments are necessary to keep them operationally current. 
It, therefore: (1) Is not a ``significant regulatory action'' under 
Executive Order 12866; (2) is not a ``significant rule'' under 
Department of Transportation (DOT) Regulatory Policies and Procedures 
(44 FR 11034; February 26, 1979); and (3) does not warrant preparation 
of a regulatory evaluation as the anticipated impact is so minimal. 
Since this is a routine matter that will only affect air traffic 
procedures and air navigation, it is certified that this proposed rule, 
when promulgated, will not have a significant economic impact on a 
substantial number of small entities under the criteria of the 
Regulatory Flexibility Act.

Environmental Review

    This proposal will be subject to an environmental analysis in 
accordance with FAA Order 1050.1F, ``Environmental Impacts: Policies 
and Procedures'' prior to any FAA final regulatory action.

List of Subjects in 14 CFR Part 73

    Airspace, Prohibited areas, Restricted areas.

The Proposed Amendment

    In consideration of the foregoing, the Federal Aviation 
Administration proposes to amend 14 CFR part 73 as follows:

PART 73--SPECIAL USE AIRSPACE

0
1. The authority citation for part 73 continues to read as follows:

    Authority: 49 U.S.C. 106(f), 106(g); 40103, 40113, 40120; E.O. 
10854, 24 FR 9565, 3 CFR, 1959-1963 Comp., p. 389.


Sec.  73.22  Alaska [Amended]

0
2. Sec.  73.22 is amended as follows:
* * * * *

[[Page 1319]]

R-2201A Fort Greely, AK [New]

    Boundaries. Beginning at lat. 63[deg]58'45'' N, long. 
145[deg]35'06'' W; to lat. 63[deg]58'08'' N, long. 145[deg]35'05'' 
W; to lat. 63[deg]57'06'' N, long. 145[deg]30'15'' W; to lat. 
63[deg]57'11'' N, long. 145[deg]39'25'' W; to lat. 63[deg]58'48'' N, 
long. 145[deg]39'25'' W; to the point of beginning.
    Designated altitudes. Surface to but not including 6,000 feet 
MSL.
    Time of designation. 0700-1900 local time Monday-Friday; other 
times by NOTAM 4 hours in advance.
    Controlling agency. FAA, Anchorage ARTCC.
    Using agency. U.S. Army, AK (USARAK), Commanding General, Joint 
Base Elmendorf-Richardson (JBER), AK.

R-2201B Fort Greely, AK [New]

    Boundaries. Beginning at lat. 63[deg]57'06'' N, long. 
145[deg]30'15'' W; thence clockwise along a 6.3-NM radius of Allen 
AAF; to lat. 63[deg]56'14'' N, long. 145[deg]31'17'' W; to lat. 
63[deg]54'54'' N, long. 145[deg]26'55'' W; thence south along 
Granite Creek; to lat. 63[deg]49'36'' N, long. 145[deg]34'53'' W; to 
lat. 63[deg]49'36'' N, long. 145[deg]40'45'' W; thence north along 
the west bank of Jarvis Creek; to lat. 63[deg]52'14'' N, long. 
145[deg]41'49'' W; to lat. 63[deg]52'56'' N, long. 145[deg]42'52'' 
W; to lat. 63[deg]55'01'' N, long. 145[deg]42'52'' W; to lat. 
63[deg]56'20'' N, long. 145[deg]39'26'' W; to lat. 63[deg]57'11'' N, 
long. 145[deg]39'25'' W; to the point of beginning.
    Designated altitudes. Surface to but not including 6,000 feet 
MSL.
    Time of designation. 0700-1900 local time Monday-Friday; other 
times by NOTAM 4 hours in advance.
    Controlling agency. FAA, Anchorage ARTCC.
    Using agency. U.S. Army, AK (USARAK), Commanding General, Joint 
Base Elmendorf-Richardson (JBER), AK.

R-2201C Fort Greely, AK [New]

    Boundaries. Beginning at lat. 63[deg]58'45'' N, long. 
145[deg]35'06'' W; to lat. 63[deg]58'08'' N, long. 145[deg]35'05'' 
W; to lat. 63[deg]57'06'' N, long. 145[deg]30'15'' W; to lat. 
63[deg]57'11'' N, long. 145[deg]39'25'' W; to lat. 63[deg]58'48'' N, 
long. 145[deg]39'25'' W; to the point of beginning.
    Designated altitudes. 6,000 feet MSL to 11,000 feet MSL.
    Time of designation. By NOTAM 4 hours in advance.
    Controlling agency. FAA, Anchorage ARTCC.
    Using agency. U.S. Army, AK (USARAK), Commanding General, Joint 
Base Elmendorf-Richardson, AK (JBER), AK.

R-2201D Fort Greely, AK [New]

    Boundaries. Beginning at lat. 63[deg]57'06'' N, long. 
145[deg]30'15'' W; thence clockwise along a 6.3-NM radius of Allen 
AAF; to lat. 63[deg]56'14'' N, long. 145[deg]31'17'' W; to lat. 
63[deg]54'54'' N, long. 145[deg]26'55'' W; thence south along 
Granite Creek; to lat. 63[deg]49'36'' N, long. 145[deg]34'53'' W; to 
lat. 63[deg]49'36'' N, long. 145[deg]40'45'' W; thence north along 
the west bank of Jarvis Creek; to lat. 63[deg]52'14'' N, long. 
145[deg]41'49'' W; to lat. 63[deg]52'56'' N, long. 145[deg]42'52'' 
W; to lat. 63[deg]55'01'' N, long. 145[deg]42'52'' W; to lat. 
63[deg]56'20'' N, long. 145[deg]39'26'' W; to lat. 63[deg]57'11'' N, 
long. 145[deg]39'25'' W; to the point of beginning.
    Designated altitudes. 6,000 feet MSL to 11,000 feet MSL.
    Time of designation. By NOTAM 4 hours in advance.
    Controlling agency. FAA, Anchorage ARTCC.
    Using agency. U.S. Army, AK (USARAK), Commanding General, Joint 
Base Elmendorf-Richardson (JBER), AK.

    Issued in Washington, DC, on January 3, 2018.
Rodger A. Dean Jr.,
Manager, Airspace Policy Group.
[FR Doc. 2018-00371 Filed 1-10-18; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4910-13-P