Airworthiness Directives; Airbus Helicopters, 23778-23780 [2018-10921]

Download as PDF 23778 Federal Register / Vol. 83, No. 100 / Wednesday, May 23, 2018 / Rules and Regulations 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 Des Moines, Washington, on May 11, 2018. Michael Kaszycki, Acting Director, System Oversight Division, Aircraft Certification Service. [FR Doc. 2018–10920 Filed 5–22–18; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910–13–P DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Part 39 [Docket No. FAA–2015–3883; Product Identifier 2014–SW–029–AD; Amendment 39–19289; AD 2018–11–01] RIN 2120–AA64 Airworthiness Directives; Airbus Helicopters Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT. ACTION: Final rule. AGENCY: We are adopting a new airworthiness directive (AD) for Airbus Helicopters Model AS332L2 and EC225LP helicopters. This AD requires installing a cut-out for the left-hand (LH) and right-hand (RH) rail support junction profiles and inspecting splices, frame 5295, and related equipment for a crack. This AD was prompted by reports of cracks on frame 5295 and on splices installed to prevent those cracks. The actions of this AD are intended to prevent an unsafe condition on these products. SUMMARY: This AD is effective June 27, 2018. The Director of the Federal Register approved the incorporation by reference of certain documents listed in this AD as of June 27, 2018. ADDRESSES: For service information identified in this final rule, contact Airbus Helicopters, Inc., 2701 N Forum Drive, Grand Prairie, TX 75052; telephone (972) 641–0000 or (800) 232– 0323; fax (972) 641–3775; or at http:// www.airbushelicopters.com/techpub. You may review the referenced service information at the FAA, Office of the Regional Counsel, Southwest Region, 10101 Hillwood Pkwy., Room 6N–321, Fort Worth, TX 76177. It is also available on the internet at http:// www.regulations.gov by searching for and locating Docket No. FAA–2015– 3883. daltland on DSKBBV9HB2PROD with RULES DATES: VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:18 May 22, 2018 Jkt 244001 Examining the AD Docket You may examine the AD docket on the internet at http:// www.regulations.gov by searching for and locating Docket No. FAA–2015– 3883; or in person at Docket Operations between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. The AD docket contains this AD, the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) AD, any incorporated-byreference service information, the economic evaluation, any comments received, and other information. The street address for Docket Operations (phone: 800–647–5527) is 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: Gary Roach, Aviation Safety Engineer, Regulations & Policy Section, Rotorcraft Standards Branch, FAA, 10101 Hillwood Pkwy., Fort Worth, TX 76177; telephone (817) 222–5110; email gary.b.roach@faa.gov. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Discussion On January 5, 2016, at 81 FR 191, the Federal Register published our notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM), which proposed to amend 14 CFR part 39 by adding an AD that would apply to Model AS332L2 and Model EC225LP helicopters with an extended aluminum splice installed on frame 5295. The NPRM proposed to require installing a cut-out for the LH and RH rail support junction profiles and inspecting splices, frame 5295, and related equipment for a crack. The proposed requirements were intended to detect a crack in frame 5295, which could lead to structural failure of the frame and loss of control of the helicopter. The NPRM was prompted by AD No. 2014–0098–E, dated April 25, 2014, issued by EASA, which is the Technical Agent for the Member States of the European Union, to correct an unsafe condition for Model AS332L2 and EC225LP helicopters. EASA AD No. 2014–0098–E applies to helicopters with a frame 5295 that have been reinforced by installing aluminium splices on the RH and LH fuselage external skins. EASA advises of a report of a crack that initiated on a splice in an area hidden by the overlapping junction profile of the cabin sliding door rail support and then spread to the frame. EASA states that a crack in frame 5295, if not detected and corrected, could lead to loss of structural integrity PO 00000 Frm 00004 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 of the helicopter frame and subsequent loss of control of the helicopter. To address this condition, EASA issued AD No. 2014–0098–E to require repetitive inspections of the splices for a crack, as well as cutting out the rail support junction profiles to provide a convenient access to identify cracks in a splice. Since the NPRM was issued, the FAA’s Aircraft Certification Service has changed its organizational structure. The new structure replaces product directorates with functional divisions. We have revised some of the office titles and nomenclature throughout this Final rule to reflect the new organizational changes. Additional information about the new structure can be found in the Notice published on July 25, 2017 (82 FR 34564). Comments After our NPRM was published, we received comments from a commenter who raised three issues. Request The commenter requested that we revise the applicability of the AD to exempt helicopters that are ‘‘post mod 07 26493 or RDAS 332–1284–13.’’ We partially agree. Modification (MOD) 0726493 or repair design approval sheet (RDAS) 332–1284–13 specify installing a stainless steel doubler to reduce stress in the splice and frame, thereby eliminating the unsafe condition. We disagree with exempting ‘‘post mod’’ helicopters, however, as the stainless steel doubler could be removed (subjecting the helicopter again to the unsafe condition) and the helicopter would still be in a ‘‘post mod’’ configuration. Instead, we have changed the applicability to exempt helicopters with the steel splice kit installed that pertains to MOD 0726493. The commenter requested that we revise the compliance time of the AD to include the flow charts from the Airbus Helicopters service information. The commenter states that this information would explain the steps involved to operators to eliminate the unsafe condition. The commenter also requested that we clarify the compliance times as discussed in the preamble of the NPRM, because they appear different from those in the service information and the EASA AD. We disagree. The commenter is correct that the compliance times in our AD are different, in some measure, to those in the EASA AD. But the compliance times in the AD are clear as written. The requested change is unnecessary. E:\FR\FM\23MYR1.SGM 23MYR1 Federal Register / Vol. 83, No. 100 / Wednesday, May 23, 2018 / Rules and Regulations The commenter requested that we withdraw the AD because all helicopters in the U.S. fleet have either installed the cut-out or are scheduled for installation of the cut-out. We disagree. The FAA has determined that an unsafe condition exists. AD action is required to mandate corrective action for this unsafe condition. In addition, if additional helicopters are imported into the United States, AD action is necessary to require that those helicopters accomplish the corrective actions before operating in this country. accomplished on the aircraft to allow for a visual check of the splice for frame 5295, it would have revealed the crack in the splice, prompting its repair and consequently limiting the damage to frame 5295. As a result, the ASBs call for the rail support cut-out on the RH and LH side of the frame as well as periodic visual inspections of frame 5295 and related equipment. 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. FAA’s Determination These helicopters have been approved by the aviation authority of France and are approved for operation in the United States. Pursuant to our bilateral agreement with France, EASA, its technical representative, has notified us of the unsafe condition described in the EASA AD. We are issuing this AD because we evaluated all information provided by EASA, reviewed the relevant information, considered the comments received, and determined the unsafe condition exists and is likely to exist or develop on other helicopters of these same type designs and that air safety and the public interest require adopting the AD requirements as proposed with the change described previously and with a revision to the estimated costs of complying with this AD. These changes are consistent with the intent of the proposals in the NPRM and will not increase the economic burden on any operator nor increase the scope of the AD. Other Related Service Information We reviewed Eurocopter Helicopters (now Airbus Helicopters) Service Bulletin (SB) No. 53–003, Revision 4, for Model EC225LP helicopters and SB No. 53.01.52, Revision 5, for Model AS332L2 helicopters, both dated July 23, 2010. The SBs specify procedures to reinforce frame 5295 by installing a new titanium plate underneath the fitting and a new widened aluminum splice below the upper corner of the door. We also reviewed Airbus Helicopters SB No. 05–019, Revision 4, dated September 22, 2014, for Model EC225LP helicopters, which proposes that you cut out the junction profiles to perform periodic visual inspections. daltland on DSKBBV9HB2PROD with RULES Differences Between This AD and the EASA AD The EASA AD requires contacting Airbus Helicopters if there is a crack in the affected parts. This AD makes no such requirement. The EASA AD sets various timelines for repairing affected parts if a crack exists. This AD requires repairing affected parts before further flight if a crack exists. Related Service Information Under 1 CFR Part 51 We reviewed Airbus Helicopters Alert Service Bulletin (ASB) No. EC225– 05A038 for Model EC225LP helicopters and ASB No. AS332–05.00.97 for Model AS332L2 helicopters. The ASBs, both Revision 0 and both dated April 15, 2014, report cracks were found in the splice and frame 5295 on a Model AS332L2 helicopter during a major inspection. The splice had been added in compliance with MOD 0726517. Had an optional rail support cut-out been VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:18 May 22, 2018 Jkt 244001 Costs of Compliance We estimate that this AD affects 4 helicopters of U.S. Registry. We estimate that operators may incur the following costs in order to comply with this AD. Labor costs average $85 a work-hour. Based on these estimates, we expect the following costs: Installing the cut-outs on frame 5295 requires 40 work-hours for a labor cost of $3,400. Parts cost $5,000 for total cost per helicopter of $8,400 and $33,600 for the U.S. fleet. Inspecting helicopter frame 5295 requires 2 work-hours for a labor cost of $170 per helicopter. No parts are needed for a total U.S. fleet cost of $680 per inspection cycle. Repairing a splice requires 40 workhours and a parts cost of $5,000 for a total cost of $8,400 per helicopter. 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: PO 00000 Frm 00005 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 23779 ‘‘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 helicopters identified in this rulemaking action. Regulatory Findings This AD will not have federalism implications under Executive Order 13132. This AD will not have a substantial direct effect on the States, on the relationship between the national government and the States, or on the distribution of power and responsibilities among the various levels of government. For the reasons discussed above, I certify that this AD: (1) Is not a ‘‘significant regulatory action’’ under Executive Order 12866; (2) Is not a ‘‘significant rule’’ under DOT Regulatory Policies and Procedures (44 FR 11034, February 26, 1979); (3) Will not affect intrastate aviation in Alaska to the extent that it justifies making a regulatory distinction; and (4) Will not have a significant economic impact, positive or negative, on a substantial number of small entities under the criteria of the Regulatory Flexibility Act. We prepared an economic evaluation of the estimated costs to comply with this AD and placed it in the AD docket. List of Subjects in 14 CFR Part 39 Air transportation, Aircraft, Aviation safety, Incorporation by reference, Safety. Adoption of the Amendment Accordingly, under the authority delegated to me by the Administrator, the FAA amends 14 CFR part 39 as follows: PART 39—AIRWORTHINESS DIRECTIVES 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): ■ 2018–11–01 Airbus Helicopters: Amendment 39–19289; Docket No. FAA–2015–3883; Product Identifier 2014–SW–029–AD. E:\FR\FM\23MYR1.SGM 23MYR1 23780 Federal Register / Vol. 83, No. 100 / Wednesday, May 23, 2018 / Rules and Regulations (a) Applicability This AD applies to Model AS332L2 and Model EC225LP helicopters, certificated in any category, with an extended aluminum splice installed on frame 5295, except helicopters with steel splice kit part number 332A08–2649–3072 installed. Note 1 to paragraph (a) of this AD: Helicopters with Modification (MOD) 0726517 have an extended aluminum splice installed. (b) Unsafe Condition This AD defines the unsafe condition as a crack on helicopter frame 5295. This condition could result in structural failure of the frame and subsequent loss of control of the helicopter. (c) Effective Date This AD becomes effective June 27, 2018. (d) Compliance You are responsible for performing each action required by this AD within the specified compliance time unless it has already been accomplished prior to that time. (e) Required Actions (1) Before a splice reaches 1,700 hours time-in-service (TIS), within 50 hours TIS, or before the helicopter reaches 11,950 hours TIS, whichever occurs later, do the following: (i) Install the rail support cut-out and identify the right-hand and left-hand junction profile in accordance with the Accomplishment Instructions, paragraph 3.B.2, of Airbus Helicopters Alert Service Bulletin (ASB) No. EC225–05A038, Revision 0, dated April 15, 2014 (ASB EC225– 05A038), or ASB No. AS332–05.00.97, Revision 0, dated April 15, 2014 (ASB AS332–05.00.97), whichever is applicable to your helicopter. (ii) Inspect each splice for a crack in the area depicted as Area Y in Figure 3 of ASB EC225–05A038 or ASB AS332–05.00.97, whichever is applicable to your helicopter. If a crack exists, repair or replace the splice before further flight. (2) Thereafter at intervals not to exceed 110 hours TIS, inspect each splice for a crack in the area depicted as Area Y in Figure 3 of ASB EC225–05A038 or ASB AS332–05.00.97. If a crack exists, repair or replace the splice before further flight. daltland on DSKBBV9HB2PROD with RULES (f) Credit for Actions Previously Completed Installing rail support cut-outs in accordance with MOD 0728090 or Airbus Helicopters Service Bulletin No. 05–019, Revision 4, dated September 22, 2014, before the effective date of this AD is considered acceptable for compliance with the corresponding actions specified in paragraph (e)(1)(i) of this AD. (g) Alternative Methods of Compliance (AMOCs) (1) The Manager, Safety Management Section, Rotorcraft Standards Branch, FAA, may approve AMOCs for this AD. Send your proposal to: Gary Roach, Aviation Safety Engineer, Regulations & Policy Section, Rotorcraft Standards Branch, FAA, 10101 Hillwood Pkwy., Fort Worth, TX 76177; VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:18 May 22, 2018 Jkt 244001 telephone (817) 222–5110; email 9-ASWFTW-AMOC-Requests@faa.gov. (2) For operations conducted under a 14 CFR part 119 operating certificate or under 14 CFR part 91, subpart K, we suggest that you notify your principal inspector, or lacking a principal inspector, the manager of the local flight standards district office or certificate holding district office, before operating any aircraft complying with this AD through an AMOC. (h) Additional Information (1) Airbus Helicopters Service Bulletin (SB) No. 05–019, Revision 4, dated September 22, 2014, and Eurocopter Helicopters (now Airbus Helicopters) SB No. 53–003, Revision 4, and SB No. 53.01.52, Revision 5, both dated July 23, 2010, which are not incorporated by reference, contain additional information about the subject of this AD. For service information identified in this AD, contact Airbus Helicopters, Inc., 2701 N. Forum Drive, Grand Prairie, TX 75052; telephone (972) 641–0000 or (800) 232–0323; fax (972) 641–3775; or at http:// www.airbushelicopters.com/techpub. You may view the referenced service information at the FAA, Office of the Regional Counsel, Southwest Region, 10101 Hillwood Pkwy., Room 6N–321, Fort Worth, TX 76177. (2) The subject of this AD is addressed in European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) AD No. 2014–0098–E, dated April 25, 2014. You may view the EASA AD on the internet at http://www.regulations.gov in Docket No. FAA–2015–3883. (i) Subject Joint Aircraft Service Component (JASC) Code: 5310, Fuselage Main, Structure. (j) Material Incorporated by Reference (1) The Director of the Federal Register approved the incorporation by reference of the service information listed in this paragraph under 5 U.S.C. 552(a) and 1 CFR part 51. (2) You must use this service information as applicable to do the actions required by this AD, unless the AD specifies otherwise. (i) Airbus Helicopters Alert Service Bulletin No. EC225–05A038, Revision 0, dated April 15, 2014. (ii) Airbus Helicopters Alert Service Bulletin No. AS332–05.00.97, Revision 0, dated April 15, 2014. (3) For Airbus Helicopters service information identified in this AD, contact Airbus Helicopters, Inc., 2701 N. Forum Drive, Grand Prairie, TX 75052; telephone (972) 641–0000 or (800) 232–0323; fax (972) 641–3775; or at http:// www.airbushelicopters.com/techpub. (4) You may view this service information at the FAA, Office of the Regional Counsel, Southwest Region, 10101 Hillwood Pkwy., Room 6N–321, Fort Worth, TX 76177. For information on the availability of this material at the FAA, call (817) 222–5110. (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:// PO 00000 Frm 00006 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 www.archives.gov/federal-register/cfr/ibrlocations.html. Issued in Fort Worth, Texas, on May 16, 2018. Scott A. Horn, Deputy Director for Regulatory Operations, Compliance & Airworthiness Division, Aircraft Certification Service. [FR Doc. 2018–10921 Filed 5–22–18; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910–13–P DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Part 39 [Docket No. FAA–2018–0188; Product Identifier 2018–CE–002–AD; Amendment 39–19285; AD 2018–10–10] RIN 2120–AA64 Airworthiness Directives; Diamond Aircraft Industries GmbH Airplanes Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT. ACTION: Final rule; request for comments AGENCY: We are superseding Airworthiness Directive (AD) 2017–01– 12, AD 2017–11–08, and AD 2017–15– 09 for certain Diamond Aircraft Industries GmbH Model DA 42 airplanes. This AD results from mandatory continuing airworthiness information (MCAI) issued by the aviation authority of another country to identify and address an unsafe condition on an aviation product. The MCAI describes the unsafe condition as uncommanded engine shutdown during flight due to failure of the propellerregulating valve caused by hot exhaust gases coming from fractured engine exhaust pipes. We are issuing this AD to require actions to address the unsafe condition on these products. DATES: This AD is effective June 12, 2018. The Director of the Federal Register approved the incorporation by reference of certain publications listed in this AD as of June 12, 2018. The Director of the Federal Register approved the incorporation by reference of certain other publications listed in this AD as of May 31, 2017 (82 FR 24843, May 31, 2017) and August 1, 2017 (82 FR 35630, August 1, 2017). We must receive comments on this AD by July 9, 2018. ADDRESSES: You may send comments by any of the following methods: • Federal eRulemaking Portal: Go to http://www.regulations.gov. Follow the instructions for submitting comments. • Fax: (202) 493–2251. SUMMARY: E:\FR\FM\23MYR1.SGM 23MYR1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 83, Number 100 (Wednesday, May 23, 2018)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Pages 23778-23780]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2018-10921]


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DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION

Federal Aviation Administration

14 CFR Part 39

[Docket No. FAA-2015-3883; Product Identifier 2014-SW-029-AD; Amendment 
39-19289; AD 2018-11-01]
RIN 2120-AA64


Airworthiness Directives; Airbus Helicopters

AGENCY: Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT.

ACTION: Final rule.

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SUMMARY: We are adopting a new airworthiness directive (AD) for Airbus 
Helicopters Model AS332L2 and EC225LP helicopters. This AD requires 
installing a cut-out for the left-hand (LH) and right-hand (RH) rail 
support junction profiles and inspecting splices, frame 5295, and 
related equipment for a crack. This AD was prompted by reports of 
cracks on frame 5295 and on splices installed to prevent those cracks. 
The actions of this AD are intended to prevent an unsafe condition on 
these products.

DATES: This AD is effective June 27, 2018.
    The Director of the Federal Register approved the incorporation by 
reference of certain documents listed in this AD as of June 27, 2018.

ADDRESSES: For service information identified in this final rule, 
contact Airbus Helicopters, Inc., 2701 N Forum Drive, Grand Prairie, TX 
75052; telephone (972) 641-0000 or (800) 232-0323; fax (972) 641-3775; 
or at http://www.airbushelicopters.com/techpub. You may review the 
referenced service information at the FAA, Office of the Regional 
Counsel, Southwest Region, 10101 Hillwood Pkwy., Room 6N-321, Fort 
Worth, TX 76177. It is also available on the internet at http://www.regulations.gov by searching for and locating Docket No. FAA-2015-
3883.

Examining the AD Docket

    You may examine the AD docket on the internet at http://www.regulations.gov by searching for and locating Docket No. FAA-2015-
3883; or in person at Docket Operations between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., 
Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. The AD docket contains 
this AD, the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) AD, any 
incorporated-by-reference service information, the economic evaluation, 
any comments received, and other information. The street address for 
Docket Operations (phone: 800-647-5527) is 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: Gary Roach, Aviation Safety Engineer, 
Regulations & Policy Section, Rotorcraft Standards Branch, FAA, 10101 
Hillwood Pkwy., Fort Worth, TX 76177; telephone (817) 222-5110; email 
[email protected].

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: 

Discussion

    On January 5, 2016, at 81 FR 191, the Federal Register published 
our notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM), which proposed to amend 14 
CFR part 39 by adding an AD that would apply to Model AS332L2 and Model 
EC225LP helicopters with an extended aluminum splice installed on frame 
5295. The NPRM proposed to require installing a cut-out for the LH and 
RH rail support junction profiles and inspecting splices, frame 5295, 
and related equipment for a crack. The proposed requirements were 
intended to detect a crack in frame 5295, which could lead to 
structural failure of the frame and loss of control of the helicopter.
    The NPRM was prompted by AD No. 2014-0098-E, dated April 25, 2014, 
issued by EASA, which is the Technical Agent for the Member States of 
the European Union, to correct an unsafe condition for Model AS332L2 
and EC225LP helicopters. EASA AD No. 2014-0098-E applies to helicopters 
with a frame 5295 that have been reinforced by installing aluminium 
splices on the RH and LH fuselage external skins. EASA advises of a 
report of a crack that initiated on a splice in an area hidden by the 
overlapping junction profile of the cabin sliding door rail support and 
then spread to the frame.
    EASA states that a crack in frame 5295, if not detected and 
corrected, could lead to loss of structural integrity of the helicopter 
frame and subsequent loss of control of the helicopter. To address this 
condition, EASA issued AD No. 2014-0098-E to require repetitive 
inspections of the splices for a crack, as well as cutting out the rail 
support junction profiles to provide a convenient access to identify 
cracks in a splice.
    Since the NPRM was issued, the FAA's Aircraft Certification Service 
has changed its organizational structure. The new structure replaces 
product directorates with functional divisions. We have revised some of 
the office titles and nomenclature throughout this Final rule to 
reflect the new organizational changes. Additional information about 
the new structure can be found in the Notice published on July 25, 2017 
(82 FR 34564).

Comments

    After our NPRM was published, we received comments from a commenter 
who raised three issues.

Request

    The commenter requested that we revise the applicability of the AD 
to exempt helicopters that are ``post mod 07 26493 or RDAS 332-1284-
13.''
    We partially agree. Modification (MOD) 0726493 or repair design 
approval sheet (RDAS) 332-1284-13 specify installing a stainless steel 
doubler to reduce stress in the splice and frame, thereby eliminating 
the unsafe condition. We disagree with exempting ``post mod'' 
helicopters, however, as the stainless steel doubler could be removed 
(subjecting the helicopter again to the unsafe condition) and the 
helicopter would still be in a ``post mod'' configuration. Instead, we 
have changed the applicability to exempt helicopters with the steel 
splice kit installed that pertains to MOD 0726493.
    The commenter requested that we revise the compliance time of the 
AD to include the flow charts from the Airbus Helicopters service 
information. The commenter states that this information would explain 
the steps involved to operators to eliminate the unsafe condition. The 
commenter also requested that we clarify the compliance times as 
discussed in the preamble of the NPRM, because they appear different 
from those in the service information and the EASA AD.
    We disagree. The commenter is correct that the compliance times in 
our AD are different, in some measure, to those in the EASA AD. But the 
compliance times in the AD are clear as written. The requested change 
is unnecessary.

[[Page 23779]]

    The commenter requested that we withdraw the AD because all 
helicopters in the U.S. fleet have either installed the cut-out or are 
scheduled for installation of the cut-out.
    We disagree. The FAA has determined that an unsafe condition 
exists. AD action is required to mandate corrective action for this 
unsafe condition. In addition, if additional helicopters are imported 
into the United States, AD action is necessary to require that those 
helicopters accomplish the corrective actions before operating in this 
country.

FAA's Determination

    These helicopters have been approved by the aviation authority of 
France and are approved for operation in the United States. Pursuant to 
our bilateral agreement with France, EASA, its technical 
representative, has notified us of the unsafe condition described in 
the EASA AD. We are issuing this AD because we evaluated all 
information provided by EASA, reviewed the relevant information, 
considered the comments received, and determined the unsafe condition 
exists and is likely to exist or develop on other helicopters of these 
same type designs and that air safety and the public interest require 
adopting the AD requirements as proposed with the change described 
previously and with a revision to the estimated costs of complying with 
this AD. These changes are consistent with the intent of the proposals 
in the NPRM and will not increase the economic burden on any operator 
nor increase the scope of the AD.

Differences Between This AD and the EASA AD

    The EASA AD requires contacting Airbus Helicopters if there is a 
crack in the affected parts. This AD makes no such requirement.
    The EASA AD sets various timelines for repairing affected parts if 
a crack exists. This AD requires repairing affected parts before 
further flight if a crack exists.

Related Service Information Under 1 CFR Part 51

    We reviewed Airbus Helicopters Alert Service Bulletin (ASB) No. 
EC225-05A038 for Model EC225LP helicopters and ASB No. AS332-05.00.97 
for Model AS332L2 helicopters. The ASBs, both Revision 0 and both dated 
April 15, 2014, report cracks were found in the splice and frame 5295 
on a Model AS332L2 helicopter during a major inspection. The splice had 
been added in compliance with MOD 0726517. Had an optional rail support 
cut-out been accomplished on the aircraft to allow for a visual check 
of the splice for frame 5295, it would have revealed the crack in the 
splice, prompting its repair and consequently limiting the damage to 
frame 5295. As a result, the ASBs call for the rail support cut-out on 
the RH and LH side of the frame as well as periodic visual inspections 
of frame 5295 and related equipment.
    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.

Other Related Service Information

    We reviewed Eurocopter Helicopters (now Airbus Helicopters) Service 
Bulletin (SB) No. 53-003, Revision 4, for Model EC225LP helicopters and 
SB No. 53.01.52, Revision 5, for Model AS332L2 helicopters, both dated 
July 23, 2010. The SBs specify procedures to reinforce frame 5295 by 
installing a new titanium plate underneath the fitting and a new 
widened aluminum splice below the upper corner of the door. We also 
reviewed Airbus Helicopters SB No. 05-019, Revision 4, dated September 
22, 2014, for Model EC225LP helicopters, which proposes that you cut 
out the junction profiles to perform periodic visual inspections.

Costs of Compliance

    We estimate that this AD affects 4 helicopters of U.S. Registry. We 
estimate that operators may incur the following costs in order to 
comply with this AD. Labor costs average $85 a work-hour. Based on 
these estimates, we expect the following costs:
    Installing the cut-outs on frame 5295 requires 40 work-hours for a 
labor cost of $3,400. Parts cost $5,000 for total cost per helicopter 
of $8,400 and $33,600 for the U.S. fleet.
    Inspecting helicopter frame 5295 requires 2 work-hours for a labor 
cost of $170 per helicopter. No parts are needed for a total U.S. fleet 
cost of $680 per inspection cycle.
    Repairing a splice requires 40 work-hours and a parts cost of 
$5,000 for a total cost of $8,400 per helicopter.

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 helicopters identified in this 
rulemaking action.

Regulatory Findings

    This AD will not have federalism implications under Executive Order 
13132. This AD will not have a substantial direct effect on the States, 
on the relationship between the national government and the States, or 
on the distribution of power and responsibilities among the various 
levels of government.
    For the reasons discussed above, I certify that this AD:
    (1) Is not a ``significant regulatory action'' under Executive 
Order 12866;
    (2) Is not a ``significant rule'' under DOT Regulatory Policies and 
Procedures (44 FR 11034, February 26, 1979);
    (3) Will not affect intrastate aviation in Alaska to the extent 
that it justifies making a regulatory distinction; and
    (4) Will not have a significant economic impact, positive or 
negative, on a substantial number of small entities under the criteria 
of the Regulatory Flexibility Act.
    We prepared an economic evaluation of the estimated costs to comply 
with this AD and placed it in the AD docket.

List of Subjects in 14 CFR Part 39

    Air transportation, Aircraft, Aviation safety, Incorporation by 
reference, Safety.

Adoption of the Amendment

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

PART 39--AIRWORTHINESS DIRECTIVES

0
1. The authority citation for part 39 continues to read as follows:

    Authority: 49 U.S.C. 106(g), 40113, 44701.


Sec.  39.13  [Amended]

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

2018-11-01 Airbus Helicopters: Amendment 39-19289; Docket No. FAA-
2015-3883; Product Identifier 2014-SW-029-AD.

[[Page 23780]]

(a) Applicability

    This AD applies to Model AS332L2 and Model EC225LP helicopters, 
certificated in any category, with an extended aluminum splice 
installed on frame 5295, except helicopters with steel splice kit 
part number 332A08-2649-3072 installed.

    Note 1 to paragraph (a) of this AD: Helicopters with 
Modification (MOD) 0726517 have an extended aluminum splice 
installed.

(b) Unsafe Condition

    This AD defines the unsafe condition as a crack on helicopter 
frame 5295. This condition could result in structural failure of the 
frame and subsequent loss of control of the helicopter.

(c) Effective Date

    This AD becomes effective June 27, 2018.

(d) Compliance

    You are responsible for performing each action required by this 
AD within the specified compliance time unless it has already been 
accomplished prior to that time.

(e) Required Actions

    (1) Before a splice reaches 1,700 hours time-in-service (TIS), 
within 50 hours TIS, or before the helicopter reaches 11,950 hours 
TIS, whichever occurs later, do the following:
    (i) Install the rail support cut-out and identify the right-hand 
and left-hand junction profile in accordance with the Accomplishment 
Instructions, paragraph 3.B.2, of Airbus Helicopters Alert Service 
Bulletin (ASB) No. EC225-05A038, Revision 0, dated April 15, 2014 
(ASB EC225-05A038), or ASB No. AS332-05.00.97, Revision 0, dated 
April 15, 2014 (ASB AS332-05.00.97), whichever is applicable to your 
helicopter.
    (ii) Inspect each splice for a crack in the area depicted as 
Area Y in Figure 3 of ASB EC225-05A038 or ASB AS332-05.00.97, 
whichever is applicable to your helicopter. If a crack exists, 
repair or replace the splice before further flight.
    (2) Thereafter at intervals not to exceed 110 hours TIS, inspect 
each splice for a crack in the area depicted as Area Y in Figure 3 
of ASB EC225-05A038 or ASB AS332-05.00.97. If a crack exists, repair 
or replace the splice before further flight.

(f) Credit for Actions Previously Completed

    Installing rail support cut-outs in accordance with MOD 0728090 
or Airbus Helicopters Service Bulletin No. 05-019, Revision 4, dated 
September 22, 2014, before the effective date of this AD is 
considered acceptable for compliance with the corresponding actions 
specified in paragraph (e)(1)(i) of this AD.

(g) Alternative Methods of Compliance (AMOCs)

    (1) The Manager, Safety Management Section, Rotorcraft Standards 
Branch, FAA, may approve AMOCs for this AD. Send your proposal to: 
Gary Roach, Aviation Safety Engineer, Regulations & Policy Section, 
Rotorcraft Standards Branch, FAA, 10101 Hillwood Pkwy., Fort Worth, 
TX 76177; telephone (817) 222-5110; email [email protected].
    (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

    (1) Airbus Helicopters Service Bulletin (SB) No. 05-019, 
Revision 4, dated September 22, 2014, and Eurocopter Helicopters 
(now Airbus Helicopters) SB No. 53-003, Revision 4, and SB No. 
53.01.52, Revision 5, both dated July 23, 2010, which are not 
incorporated by reference, contain additional information about the 
subject of this AD. For service information identified in this AD, 
contact Airbus Helicopters, Inc., 2701 N. Forum Drive, Grand 
Prairie, TX 75052; telephone (972) 641-0000 or (800) 232-0323; fax 
(972) 641-3775; or at http://www.airbushelicopters.com/techpub. You 
may view the referenced service information at the FAA, Office of 
the Regional Counsel, Southwest Region, 10101 Hillwood Pkwy., Room 
6N-321, Fort Worth, TX 76177.
    (2) The subject of this AD is addressed in European Aviation 
Safety Agency (EASA) AD No. 2014-0098-E, dated April 25, 2014. You 
may view the EASA AD on the internet at http://www.regulations.gov 
in Docket No. FAA-2015-3883.

(i) Subject

    Joint Aircraft Service Component (JASC) Code: 5310, Fuselage 
Main, Structure.

(j) Material Incorporated by Reference

    (1) The Director of the Federal Register approved the 
incorporation by reference of the service information listed in this 
paragraph under 5 U.S.C. 552(a) and 1 CFR part 51.
    (2) You must use this service information as applicable to do 
the actions required by this AD, unless the AD specifies otherwise.
    (i) Airbus Helicopters Alert Service Bulletin No. EC225-05A038, 
Revision 0, dated April 15, 2014.
    (ii) Airbus Helicopters Alert Service Bulletin No. AS332-
05.00.97, Revision 0, dated April 15, 2014.
    (3) For Airbus Helicopters service information identified in 
this AD, contact Airbus Helicopters, Inc., 2701 N. Forum Drive, 
Grand Prairie, TX 75052; telephone (972) 641-0000 or (800) 232-0323; 
fax (972) 641-3775; or at http://www.airbushelicopters.com/techpub.
    (4) You may view this service information at the FAA, Office of 
the Regional Counsel, Southwest Region, 10101 Hillwood Pkwy., Room 
6N-321, Fort Worth, TX 76177. For information on the availability of 
this material at the FAA, call (817) 222-5110.
    (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 Fort Worth, Texas, on May 16, 2018.
Scott A. Horn,
Deputy Director for Regulatory Operations, Compliance & Airworthiness 
Division, Aircraft Certification Service.
[FR Doc. 2018-10921 Filed 5-22-18; 8:45 am]
 BILLING CODE 4910-13-P