Airworthiness Directives; Airbus Airplanes, 33159-33162 [2018-13781]

Download as PDF 33159 Proposed Rules Federal Register Vol. 83, No. 137 Tuesday, July 17, 2018 [Docket No. FAA–2018–0554; Product Identifier 2018–NM–064–AD] p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. For service information identified in this NPRM, contact Airbus, Airworthiness Office—EIAS, RondPoint Emile Dewoitine No: 2, 31700 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 service information at the FAA, Transport Standards Branch, 2200 South 216th St., Des Moines, WA. For information on the availability of this material at the FAA, call 206–231–3195. Discussion The European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA), which is the Technical Agent for the Member States of the European Union, has issued EASA AD 2017–0168, dated September 7, 2017 (referred to after this as the Mandatory Continuing Airworthiness Information, or ‘‘the MCAI’’), to correct an unsafe condition for certain Airbus Model A318 series airplanes; Model A319 series airplanes; Model A320 series airplanes; and Model A321–111, –112, –131, –211, –212, –213, –231, –232, –251N, –253N, and –271N airplanes. The MCAI states: RIN 2120–AA64 Examining the AD Docket The airworthiness limitations for Airbus A320 family aeroplanes are currently defined and published in Airbus A318/A319/A320/ A321 Airworthiness Limitations Section (ALS) documents. The airworthiness limitations applicable to the Certification Maintenance Requirements (CMR), which are approved by EASA, are published in ALS Part 3. The instructions contained in the ALS Part 3 have been identified as mandatory actions for continued airworthiness. Failure to comply with these instructions could result in an unsafe condition. Previously, EASA issued AD 2016–0092 [which corresponds to FAA AD 2017–25–04, Amendment 39–19118 (82 FR 58098, December 11, 2017) (‘‘AD 2017–25–04’’)], to require accomplishment of all maintenance tasks as described in ALS Part 3 at Revision 03. The new ALS Part 3 Revision 05 (hereafter referred to as ‘‘the ALS’’ in this [EASA] AD) includes new and/or more restrictive requirements and extends the applicability to model A320–251N, A320– 271N, A321–251N, A321–253N and A321– 271N aeroplanes. For the reason described above, this [EASA] AD retains the requirements of EASA AD 2016–0092, which is superseded, and requires accomplishment of all maintenance tasks as described in the ALS. This section of the FEDERAL REGISTER contains notices to the public of the proposed issuance of rules and regulations. The purpose of these notices is to give interested persons an opportunity to participate in the rule making prior to the adoption of the final rules. DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Part 39 Airworthiness Directives; Airbus Airplanes Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT. ACTION: Notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM). AGENCY: We propose to adopt a new airworthiness directive (AD) for certain Airbus Model A318 series airplanes; Model A319 series airplanes; Model A320 series airplanes; and Model A321– 111, –112, –131, –211, –212, –213, –231, –232, –251N, –253N, and –271N airplanes. This proposed AD was prompted by a revision of an airworthiness limitation item (ALI) document, which requires more restrictive maintenance requirements and airworthiness limitations. This proposed AD would require revising the maintenance or inspection program, as applicable, to incorporate new maintenance requirements and airworthiness limitations. We are proposing this AD to address the unsafe condition on these products. DATES: We must receive comments on this proposed AD by August 31, 2018. ADDRESSES: You may send comments, using the procedures found in 14 CFR 11.43 and 11.45, 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. • Mail: U.S. Department of Transportation, Docket Operations, M– 30, West Building Ground Floor, Room W12–140, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE, Washington, DC 20590. • Hand Delivery: Deliver to Mail address above between 9 a.m. and 5 daltland on DSKBBV9HB2PROD with PROPOSALS SUMMARY: VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:23 Jul 16, 2018 Jkt 244001 You may examine the AD docket on the internet at http:// www.regulations.gov by searching for and locating Docket No. FAA–2018– 0554; 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 NPRM, the regulatory evaluation, any comments received, and other information. The street address for Docket Operations (phone: 800–647–5527) is in the ADDRESSES section. Comments will be available in the AD docket shortly after receipt. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Sanjay Ralhan, Aerospace Engineer, International Section, Transport Standards Branch, FAA, 2200 South 216th St., Des Moines, WA 98198; telephone and fax 206–231–3223. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Comments Invited We invite you to send any written relevant data, views, or arguments about this proposal. Send your comments to an address listed under the ADDRESSES section. Include ‘‘Docket No. FAA– 2018–0554; Product Identifier 2018– NM–064–AD’’ at the beginning of your comments. We specifically invite comments on the overall regulatory, economic, environmental, and energy aspects of this NPRM. We will consider all comments received by the closing date and may amend this NPRM because of those comments. We will post all comments we receive, without change, to http:// www.regulations.gov, including any personal information you provide. We will also post a report summarizing each substantive verbal contact we receive about this NPRM. PO 00000 Frm 00001 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 The unsafe condition is a safetysignificant latent failure (that is not annunciated), which, in combination with one or more other specific failures or events, could result in a hazardous or catastrophic failure condition. 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–2018– 0554. Relationship Between Proposed AD and AD 2017–25–04 This NPRM does not propose to supersede AD 2017–25–04. Rather, we have determined that a stand-alone AD would be more appropriate to address E:\FR\FM\17JYP1.SGM 17JYP1 33160 Federal Register / Vol. 83, No. 137 / Tuesday, July 17, 2018 / Proposed Rules the changes in the MCAI. This proposed AD would require revising the maintenance or inspection program, as applicable, to incorporate new maintenance requirements and airworthiness limitations. Accomplishment of the proposed actions would then terminate all of the requirements of AD 2017–25–04. Related Service Information Under 1 CFR Part 51 Airbus has issued Airbus A318/A319/ A320/A321 Airworthiness Limitations Section (ALS) Part 3, Certification Maintenance Requirements (CMR), Revision 05, dated April 6, 2017. The service information describes maintenance instructions and airworthiness limitations, including updated inspections and intervals to be incorporated into the maintenance or inspection program. 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. daltland on DSKBBV9HB2PROD with PROPOSALS FAA’s Determination This product has been approved by the aviation authority of another country, and is approved for operation in the United States. Pursuant to our bilateral agreement with the State of Design Authority, we have been notified of the unsafe condition described in the MCAI and service information referenced above. We are proposing this AD because we evaluated all the relevant information and determined the unsafe condition described previously is likely to exist or develop on other products of these same type designs. Proposed AD Requirements This proposed AD would require revising the maintenance or inspection program to incorporate new or revised airworthiness limitation requirements, except as discussed under ‘‘Differences Between this Proposed AD and the MCAI.’’ This proposed AD would require revisions to certain operator maintenance documents to include new actions (e.g., inspections). Compliance with these actions is required by 14 CFR 91.403(c). For airplanes that have been previously modified, altered, or repaired in the areas addressed by this proposed AD, the operator may not be able to accomplish the actions described in the revisions. In this situation, to comply with 14 CFR 91.403(c), the operator must request approval for an alternative method of compliance according to paragraph (j)(1) of this proposed AD. VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:23 Jul 16, 2018 Jkt 244001 The request should include a description of changes to the required inspections that will ensure the continued operational safety of the airplane. Airworthiness Limitations Based on Type Design The FAA recently became aware of an issue related to the applicability of ADs that require incorporation of an ALS revision into an operator’s maintenance or inspection program. Typically, when these types of ADs are issued by civil aviation authorities of other countries, they apply to all airplanes covered under an identified type certificate (TC). The corresponding FAA AD typically retains applicability to all of those airplanes. In addition, U.S. operators must operate their airplanes in an airworthy condition, in accordance with 14 CFR 91.7(a). Included in this obligation is the requirement to perform any maintenance or inspections specified in the ALS, and in accordance with the ALS as specified in 14 CFR 43.16 and 91.403(c), unless an alternative has been approved by the FAA. When a type certificate is issued for a type design, the specific ALS, including the current revision in effect, is a part of that type design, as specified in 14 CFR 21.31(c). The sum effect of these operational and maintenance requirements is an obligation to comply with the ALS revision defined in the type design referenced in the manufacturer’s conformity statement. This obligation may introduce a conflict with an AD that requires a specific ALS revision if new airplanes are delivered with a later revision as part of their type design. Note: When a new airplane is delivered with a later ALS revision, the revised ALS must correct the unsafe condition associated with an existing AD, as specified in 14 CFR 21.21(b)(2). To address this conflict, the FAA has approved alternative methods of compliance (AMOCs) that allow operators to incorporate the most recent ALS revision (i.e., a later revision) into their maintenance/inspection programs, in lieu of the earlier ALS revision required by the AD. This eliminates the conflict and enables the operator to comply with both the AD and the type design. However, compliance with AMOCs is normally optional, and we recently became aware that some operators choose to retain the AD-mandated ALS revision in their fleet-wide maintenance/inspection programs, including those for new airplanes delivered with later ALS revisions, to PO 00000 Frm 00002 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 help standardize the maintenance of the fleet. To ensure that operators comply with the applicable ALS revision for newly delivered airplanes containing a later revision than that specified in an AD, we plan to limit the applicability of ADs that mandate ALS revisions to those airplanes that are subject to an earlier revision of the ALS, either as part of the type design or as mandated by an earlier AD. This proposed AD therefore would apply to Airbus Model A318 series airplanes; Model A319 series airplanes; Model A320 series airplanes; and Model A321–111, –112, –131, –211, –212, –213, –231, –232, –251N, –253N, and –271N airplanes with an original certificate of airworthiness or original export certificate of airworthiness that was issued on or before the date of the ALS revision identified in this proposed AD. Operators of airplanes with an original certificate of airworthiness or original export certificate of airworthiness issued after that date must comply with the airworthiness limitations specified as part of the approved type design and referenced on the type certificate data sheet. Difference Between This Proposed AD and the MCAI The MCAI specifies that if there are findings from the ALS inspection tasks, corrective actions must be accomplished in accordance with Airbus maintenance documentation. However, this proposed AD does not include that requirement. Operators of U.S.-registered airplanes are required by general airworthiness and operational regulations to perform maintenance using methods that are acceptable to the FAA. We consider those methods to be adequate to address any corrective actions necessitated by the findings of ALS inspections required by this proposed AD. Costs of Compliance We estimate that this proposed AD affects 1,250 airplanes of U.S. registry. We estimate the following costs to comply with this proposed AD: We have determined that revising the maintenance or inspection program takes an average of 90 work-hours per operator, although we recognize that this number may vary from operator to operator. In the past, we have estimated that this action takes 1 work-hour per airplane. Since operators incorporate maintenance or inspection program changes for their affected fleet(s), we have determined that a per-operator estimate is more accurate than a perairplane estimate. Therefore, we estimate the total cost per operator to be E:\FR\FM\17JYP1.SGM 17JYP1 Federal Register / Vol. 83, No. 137 / Tuesday, July 17, 2018 / Proposed Rules $7,650 (90 work-hours × $85 per workhour). 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 proposed 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 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. daltland on DSKBBV9HB2PROD with PROPOSALS Regulatory Findings We determined that this proposed AD would not have federalism implications under Executive Order 13132. This proposed AD would not have a substantial direct effect on the States, on the relationship between the national Government and the States, or on the distribution of power and responsibilities among the various levels of government. For the reasons discussed above, I certify this proposed regulation: 1. Is not a ‘‘significant regulatory action’’ under Executive Order 12866; 2. Is not a ‘‘significant rule’’ under the DOT Regulatory Policies and Procedures (44 FR 11034, February 26, 1979); 3. Will not affect intrastate aviation in Alaska; 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. VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:23 Jul 16, 2018 Jkt 244001 List of Subjects in 14 CFR Part 39 Air transportation, Aircraft, Aviation safety, Incorporation by reference, Safety. The Proposed Amendment Accordingly, under the authority delegated to me by the Administrator, the FAA proposes to amend 14 CFR part 39 as follows: PART 39—AIRWORTHINESS DIRECTIVES 1. The authority citation for part 39 continues to read as follows: ■ Authority: 49 U.S.C. 106(g), 40113, 44701. § 39.13 [Amended] 2. The FAA amends § 39.13 by adding the following new airworthiness directive (AD): ■ Airbus: Docket No. FAA–2018–0554; Product Identifier 2018–NM–064–AD. (a) Comments Due Date We must receive comments by August 31, 2018. (b) Affected ADs This AD affects AD 2017–25–04, Amendment 39–19118 (82 FR 58098, December 11, 2017) (‘‘AD 2017–25–04’’). (c) Applicability This AD applies to the Airbus airplanes identified in paragraphs (c)(1), (c)(2), (c)(3), and (c)(4) of this AD, certificated in any category, with an original certificate of airworthiness or original export certificate of airworthiness issued on or before April 6, 2017. (1) Model A318–111, –112, –121, and –122 airplanes. (2) Model A319–111, –112, –113, –114, –115, –131, –132, and –133 airplanes. (3) Model A320–211, –212, –214, –216, –231, –232, –233, –251N, and –271N airplanes. (4) Model A321–111, –112, –131, –211, –212, –213, –231, –232, –251N, –253N, and –271N airplanes. (d) Subject Air Transport Association (ATA) of America Code 05, Time Limits/Maintenance Checks. (e) Reason This AD was prompted by a revision of an airworthiness limitation item (ALI) document, which requires more restrictive maintenance requirements and airworthiness limitations. We are issuing this AD to address a safety-significant latent failure (that is not annunciated), which, in combination with one or more other specific failures or events, could result in a hazardous or catastrophic failure condition. (f) Compliance Comply with this AD within the compliance times specified, unless already done. PO 00000 Frm 00003 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 33161 (g) Revision of Maintenance or Inspection Program Within 90 days after the effective date of this AD, revise the maintenance or inspection program, as applicable, to incorporate the information specified in Airbus A318/A319/ A320/A321 Airworthiness Limitations Section (ALS) Part 3, Certification Maintenance Requirements (CMR), Revision 05, dated April 6, 2017 (‘‘ALS Part 3 CMR, R5’’). The initial compliance time for accomplishing the tasks specified in ALS Part 3 CMR, R5, is at the applicable time specified in ALS Part 3 CMR, R5, or within 90 days after the effective date of this AD, whichever occurs later. (h) Terminating Actions for AD 2017–25–04 Accomplishing the actions required by paragraph (g) of this AD terminates all of the requirements of AD 2017–25–04. (i) No Alternative Actions or Intervals After the maintenance or inspection program, as applicable, has been revised as required by paragraph (g) of this AD, no alternative actions (e.g., inspections) or intervals may be used unless the actions or intervals are approved as an alternative method of compliance (AMOC) in accordance with the procedures specified in paragraph (j)(1) of this AD. (j) 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 (k)(2) of this AD. Information may be emailed to: 9-ANM-116-AMOCREQUESTS@faa.gov. (i) 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. (ii) AMOCs applicable previously for AD 2017–25–04 or AD 2014–22–08, Amendment 39–18013 (79 FR 67042, November 12, 2014) that require incorporation of ALS Part 3 CMR, R5, are considered approved as AMOCs for the corresponding provisions of this AD. (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 the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA); or Airbus’s EASA Design Organization Approval (DOA). If approved by the DOA, the approval must include the DOAauthorized signature. (k) Related Information (1) Refer to Mandatory Continuing Airworthiness Information (MCAI) EASA AD E:\FR\FM\17JYP1.SGM 17JYP1 33162 Federal Register / Vol. 83, No. 137 / Tuesday, July 17, 2018 / Proposed Rules 2017–0168, dated September 7, 2017, 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–2018–0554. (2) For more information about this AD, contact Sanjay Ralhan, Aerospace Engineer, International Section, Transport Standards Branch, FAA, 2200 South 216th St., Des Moines, WA 98198; telephone and fax 206– 231–3223. (3) For service information identified in this AD, contact Airbus, Airworthiness Office—EIAS, Rond-Point Emile Dewoitine No: 2, 31700 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 service information at the FAA, Transport Standards Branch, 2200 South 216th St., Des Moines, WA. For information on the availability of this material at the FAA, call 206–231–3195. Issued in Des Moines, Washington, on June 19, 2018. Michael Kaszycki, Acting Director, System Oversight Division, Aircraft Certification Service. [FR Doc. 2018–13781 Filed 7–16–18; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910–13–P DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Part 39 [Docket No. FAA–2018–0582; Product Identifier 2018–NM–085–AD] • Federal eRulemaking Portal: Go to http://www.regulations.gov. Follow the instructions for submitting comments. • Fax: 202–493–2251. • Mail: U.S. Department of Transportation, Docket Operations, M– 30, West Building Ground Floor, Room W12–140, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE, Washington, DC 20590. • Hand Delivery: Deliver to Mail address above between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. Examining the AD Docket You may examine the AD docket on the internet at http:// www.regulations.gov by searching for and locating Docket No. FAA–2018– 0582; 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 proposal, any comments received, and other information. The street address for Docket Operations (phone: 800–647– 5527) is in the ADDRESSES section. Comments will be available in the AD docket shortly after receipt. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Wayne Lockett, Aerospace Engineer, Airframe Section, FAA, Seattle ACO Branch, 2200 South 216th St., Des Moines, WA 98198; phone and fax: 206– 231–3524; email: wayne.lockett@ faa.gov. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: RIN 2120–AA64 Comments Invited Airworthiness Directives; The Boeing Company Airplanes We invite you to send any written relevant data, views, or arguments about this proposal. Send your comments to an address listed under the ADDRESSES section. Include ‘‘Docket No. FAA– 2018–0582; Product Identifier 2018– NM–085–AD’’ at the beginning of your comments. We specifically invite comments on the overall regulatory, economic, environmental, and energy aspects of this proposed AD. We will consider all comments received by the closing date and may amend this proposed AD because of those comments. We will post all comments we receive, without change, to http:// www.regulations.gov, including any personal information you provide. We will also post a report summarizing each substantive verbal contact we receive about this proposed AD. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT. ACTION: Notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM); removal of airworthiness directive (AD). AGENCY: We propose to remove AD 93–14–19, which applies to certain The Boeing Company Model 767–200 and –300 series airplanes. AD 93–14–19 requires inspections for disbonding of the trailing edge wedge of the leading edge slat; and repair, if necessary. Since we issued AD 93–14–19, an updated stability and control analysis showed that the worst-case scenario of a trailing edge wedge disbond in-flight would not adversely affect the controllability of the airplane. Accordingly, we propose to remove AD 93–14–19. DATES: We must receive comments on this proposed AD by August 31, 2018. ADDRESSES: You may send comments, using the procedures found in 14 CFR 11.43 and 11.45, by any of the following methods: daltland on DSKBBV9HB2PROD with PROPOSALS SUMMARY: VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:23 Jul 16, 2018 Jkt 244001 Discussion We issued AD 93–14–19, Amendment 39–8644 (58 FR 41177, August 3, 1993) (‘‘AD 93–14–19’’), for certain The Boeing Company Model 767–200 and -300 series airplanes. AD 93–14–19 PO 00000 Frm 00004 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 requires visual inspections and either ‘‘Coin Tap’’ inspections or ultrasonic inspections for disbonding of the trailing edge wedge of the leading edge slat, and repair, if necessary. AD 93–14– 19 resulted from reports of wedge damage or disbonding; in two cases the damage resulted in loss of a portion of the trailing edge wedge. The trailing edge wedge disbonding was caused by moisture ingression at the wedge end seals and in the skin bonds along the spar chords. Moisture in the aluminum honeycomb core would cause corrosion that would eventually result in disbonding between the skin and the aluminum honeycomb core. We issued AD 93–14–19 to prevent the loss of a trailing edge wedge, which could result in reduced maneuver margins, reduced speed margins to stall, and unexpected roll before stall warning, all of which would adversely affect the controllability of the airplane. Actions Since AD 93–14–19 Was Issued Since we issued AD 93–14–19, an updated stability and control analysis showed that the worst-case scenario of a trailing edge wedge disbond in-flight would not adversely affect the controllability of the airplane. Simulation analysis shows that the airplane has sufficient lateral control up to the stick shaker to counter the rolling moment caused by a trailing edge wedge loss, at all flap settings. Therefore, the unsafe condition no longer exists on these products worldwide. FAA’s Conclusions Upon further consideration, we have determined that AD 93–14–19 must be removed. Accordingly, this proposed AD would remove AD 93–14–19. Removal of AD 93–14–19 would not preclude the FAA from issuing another related action or commit the FAA to any course of action in the future. Related Costs of Compliance AD 93–14–19 affects approximately 180 airplanes of U.S. registry. The estimated costs for the actions required by AD 93–14–19 for U.S. operators is $79,200, or $440 per airplane. Removing AD 93–14–19 would eliminate those costs. 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. E:\FR\FM\17JYP1.SGM 17JYP1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 83, Number 137 (Tuesday, July 17, 2018)]
[Proposed Rules]
[Pages 33159-33162]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2018-13781]


========================================================================
Proposed Rules
                                                Federal Register
________________________________________________________________________

This section of the FEDERAL REGISTER contains notices to the public of 
the proposed issuance of rules and regulations. The purpose of these 
notices is to give interested persons an opportunity to participate in 
the rule making prior to the adoption of the final rules.

========================================================================


Federal Register / Vol. 83, No. 137 / Tuesday, July 17, 2018 / 
Proposed Rules

[[Page 33159]]



DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION

Federal Aviation Administration

14 CFR Part 39

[Docket No. FAA-2018-0554; Product Identifier 2018-NM-064-AD]
RIN 2120-AA64


Airworthiness Directives; Airbus Airplanes

AGENCY: Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT.

ACTION: Notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM).

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

SUMMARY: We propose to adopt a new airworthiness directive (AD) for 
certain Airbus Model A318 series airplanes; Model A319 series 
airplanes; Model A320 series airplanes; and Model A321-111, -112, -131, 
-211, -212, -213, -231, -232, -251N, -253N, and -271N airplanes. This 
proposed AD was prompted by a revision of an airworthiness limitation 
item (ALI) document, which requires more restrictive maintenance 
requirements and airworthiness limitations. This proposed AD would 
require revising the maintenance or inspection program, as applicable, 
to incorporate new maintenance requirements and airworthiness 
limitations. We are proposing this AD to address the unsafe condition 
on these products.

DATES: We must receive comments on this proposed AD by August 31, 2018.

ADDRESSES: You may send comments, using the procedures found in 14 CFR 
11.43 and 11.45, 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.
     Mail: U.S. Department of Transportation, Docket 
Operations, M-30, West Building Ground Floor, Room W12-140, 1200 New 
Jersey Avenue SE, Washington, DC 20590.
     Hand Delivery: Deliver to Mail address above between 9 
a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays.
    For service information identified in this NPRM, contact Airbus, 
Airworthiness Office--EIAS, Rond-Point Emile Dewoitine No: 2, 31700 
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 service information at the FAA, 
Transport Standards Branch, 2200 South 216th St., Des Moines, WA. For 
information on the availability of this material at the FAA, call 206-
231-3195.

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-2018-
0554; 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 NPRM, the regulatory evaluation, any comments received, and other 
information. The street address for Docket Operations (phone: 800-647-
5527) is in the ADDRESSES section. Comments will be available in the AD 
docket shortly after receipt.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Sanjay Ralhan, Aerospace Engineer, 
International Section, Transport Standards Branch, FAA, 2200 South 
216th St., Des Moines, WA 98198; telephone and fax 206-231-3223.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: 

Comments Invited

    We invite you to send any written relevant data, views, or 
arguments about this proposal. Send your comments to an address listed 
under the ADDRESSES section. Include ``Docket No. FAA-2018-0554; 
Product Identifier 2018-NM-064-AD'' at the beginning of your comments. 
We specifically invite comments on the overall regulatory, economic, 
environmental, and energy aspects of this NPRM. We will consider all 
comments received by the closing date and may amend this NPRM because 
of those comments.
    We will post all comments we receive, without change, to http://www.regulations.gov, including any personal information you provide. We 
will also post a report summarizing each substantive verbal contact we 
receive about this NPRM.

Discussion

    The European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA), which is the Technical 
Agent for the Member States of the European Union, has issued EASA AD 
2017-0168, dated September 7, 2017 (referred to after this as the 
Mandatory Continuing Airworthiness Information, or ``the MCAI''), to 
correct an unsafe condition for certain Airbus Model A318 series 
airplanes; Model A319 series airplanes; Model A320 series airplanes; 
and Model A321-111, -112, -131, -211, -212, -213, -231, -232, -251N, -
253N, and -271N airplanes. The MCAI states:

    The airworthiness limitations for Airbus A320 family aeroplanes 
are currently defined and published in Airbus A318/A319/A320/A321 
Airworthiness Limitations Section (ALS) documents. The airworthiness 
limitations applicable to the Certification Maintenance Requirements 
(CMR), which are approved by EASA, are published in ALS Part 3.
    The instructions contained in the ALS Part 3 have been 
identified as mandatory actions for continued airworthiness. Failure 
to comply with these instructions could result in an unsafe 
condition.
    Previously, EASA issued AD 2016-0092 [which corresponds to FAA 
AD 2017-25-04, Amendment 39-19118 (82 FR 58098, December 11, 2017) 
(``AD 2017-25-04'')], to require accomplishment of all maintenance 
tasks as described in ALS Part 3 at Revision 03. The new ALS Part 3 
Revision 05 (hereafter referred to as ``the ALS'' in this [EASA] AD) 
includes new and/or more restrictive requirements and extends the 
applicability to model A320-251N, A320-271N, A321-251N, A321-253N 
and A321-271N aeroplanes.
    For the reason described above, this [EASA] AD retains the 
requirements of EASA AD 2016-0092, which is superseded, and requires 
accomplishment of all maintenance tasks as described in the ALS.

    The unsafe condition is a safety-significant latent failure (that 
is not annunciated), which, in combination with one or more other 
specific failures or events, could result in a hazardous or 
catastrophic failure condition. 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-2018-0554.

Relationship Between Proposed AD and AD 2017-25-04

    This NPRM does not propose to supersede AD 2017-25-04. Rather, we 
have determined that a stand-alone AD would be more appropriate to 
address

[[Page 33160]]

the changes in the MCAI. This proposed AD would require revising the 
maintenance or inspection program, as applicable, to incorporate new 
maintenance requirements and airworthiness limitations. Accomplishment 
of the proposed actions would then terminate all of the requirements of 
AD 2017-25-04.

Related Service Information Under 1 CFR Part 51

    Airbus has issued Airbus A318/A319/A320/A321 Airworthiness 
Limitations Section (ALS) Part 3, Certification Maintenance 
Requirements (CMR), Revision 05, dated April 6, 2017. The service 
information describes maintenance instructions and airworthiness 
limitations, including updated inspections and intervals to be 
incorporated into the maintenance or inspection program. 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

    This product has been approved by the aviation authority of another 
country, and is approved for operation in the United States. Pursuant 
to our bilateral agreement with the State of Design Authority, we have 
been notified of the unsafe condition described in the MCAI and service 
information referenced above. We are proposing this AD because we 
evaluated all the relevant information and determined the unsafe 
condition described previously is likely to exist or develop on other 
products of these same type designs.

Proposed AD Requirements

    This proposed AD would require revising the maintenance or 
inspection program to incorporate new or revised airworthiness 
limitation requirements, except as discussed under ``Differences 
Between this Proposed AD and the MCAI.''
    This proposed AD would require revisions to certain operator 
maintenance documents to include new actions (e.g., inspections). 
Compliance with these actions is required by 14 CFR 91.403(c). For 
airplanes that have been previously modified, altered, or repaired in 
the areas addressed by this proposed AD, the operator may not be able 
to accomplish the actions described in the revisions. In this 
situation, to comply with 14 CFR 91.403(c), the operator must request 
approval for an alternative method of compliance according to paragraph 
(j)(1) of this proposed AD. The request should include a description of 
changes to the required inspections that will ensure the continued 
operational safety of the airplane.

Airworthiness Limitations Based on Type Design

    The FAA recently became aware of an issue related to the 
applicability of ADs that require incorporation of an ALS revision into 
an operator's maintenance or inspection program.
    Typically, when these types of ADs are issued by civil aviation 
authorities of other countries, they apply to all airplanes covered 
under an identified type certificate (TC). The corresponding FAA AD 
typically retains applicability to all of those airplanes.
    In addition, U.S. operators must operate their airplanes in an 
airworthy condition, in accordance with 14 CFR 91.7(a). Included in 
this obligation is the requirement to perform any maintenance or 
inspections specified in the ALS, and in accordance with the ALS as 
specified in 14 CFR 43.16 and 91.403(c), unless an alternative has been 
approved by the FAA.
    When a type certificate is issued for a type design, the specific 
ALS, including the current revision in effect, is a part of that type 
design, as specified in 14 CFR 21.31(c).
    The sum effect of these operational and maintenance requirements is 
an obligation to comply with the ALS revision defined in the type 
design referenced in the manufacturer's conformity statement. This 
obligation may introduce a conflict with an AD that requires a specific 
ALS revision if new airplanes are delivered with a later revision as 
part of their type design. Note: When a new airplane is delivered with 
a later ALS revision, the revised ALS must correct the unsafe condition 
associated with an existing AD, as specified in 14 CFR 21.21(b)(2).
    To address this conflict, the FAA has approved alternative methods 
of compliance (AMOCs) that allow operators to incorporate the most 
recent ALS revision (i.e., a later revision) into their maintenance/
inspection programs, in lieu of the earlier ALS revision required by 
the AD. This eliminates the conflict and enables the operator to comply 
with both the AD and the type design.
    However, compliance with AMOCs is normally optional, and we 
recently became aware that some operators choose to retain the AD-
mandated ALS revision in their fleet-wide maintenance/inspection 
programs, including those for new airplanes delivered with later ALS 
revisions, to help standardize the maintenance of the fleet. To ensure 
that operators comply with the applicable ALS revision for newly 
delivered airplanes containing a later revision than that specified in 
an AD, we plan to limit the applicability of ADs that mandate ALS 
revisions to those airplanes that are subject to an earlier revision of 
the ALS, either as part of the type design or as mandated by an earlier 
AD.
    This proposed AD therefore would apply to Airbus Model A318 series 
airplanes; Model A319 series airplanes; Model A320 series airplanes; 
and Model A321-111, -112, -131, -211, -212, -213, -231, -232, -251N, -
253N, and -271N airplanes with an original certificate of airworthiness 
or original export certificate of airworthiness that was issued on or 
before the date of the ALS revision identified in this proposed AD. 
Operators of airplanes with an original certificate of airworthiness or 
original export certificate of airworthiness issued after that date 
must comply with the airworthiness limitations specified as part of the 
approved type design and referenced on the type certificate data sheet.

Difference Between This Proposed AD and the MCAI

    The MCAI specifies that if there are findings from the ALS 
inspection tasks, corrective actions must be accomplished in accordance 
with Airbus maintenance documentation. However, this proposed AD does 
not include that requirement. Operators of U.S.-registered airplanes 
are required by general airworthiness and operational regulations to 
perform maintenance using methods that are acceptable to the FAA. We 
consider those methods to be adequate to address any corrective actions 
necessitated by the findings of ALS inspections required by this 
proposed AD.

Costs of Compliance

    We estimate that this proposed AD affects 1,250 airplanes of U.S. 
registry. We estimate the following costs to comply with this proposed 
AD:
    We have determined that revising the maintenance or inspection 
program takes an average of 90 work-hours per operator, although we 
recognize that this number may vary from operator to operator. In the 
past, we have estimated that this action takes 1 work-hour per 
airplane. Since operators incorporate maintenance or inspection program 
changes for their affected fleet(s), we have determined that a per-
operator estimate is more accurate than a per-airplane estimate. 
Therefore, we estimate the total cost per operator to be

[[Page 33161]]

$7,650 (90 work-hours x $85 per work-hour).

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 proposed 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 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 proposed AD would not have federalism 
implications under Executive Order 13132. This proposed AD would not 
have a substantial direct effect on the States, on the relationship 
between the national Government and the States, or on the distribution 
of power and responsibilities among the various levels of government.
    For the reasons discussed above, I certify this proposed 
regulation:
    1. Is not a ``significant regulatory action'' under Executive Order 
12866;
    2. Is not a ``significant rule'' under the DOT Regulatory Policies 
and Procedures (44 FR 11034, February 26, 1979);
    3. Will not affect intrastate aviation in Alaska; 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.

The Proposed Amendment

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

PART 39--AIRWORTHINESS DIRECTIVES

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):

Airbus: Docket No. FAA-2018-0554; Product Identifier 2018-NM-064-AD.

(a) Comments Due Date

    We must receive comments by August 31, 2018.

(b) Affected ADs

    This AD affects AD 2017-25-04, Amendment 39-19118 (82 FR 58098, 
December 11, 2017) (``AD 2017-25-04'').

(c) Applicability

    This AD applies to the Airbus airplanes identified in paragraphs 
(c)(1), (c)(2), (c)(3), and (c)(4) of this AD, certificated in any 
category, with an original certificate of airworthiness or original 
export certificate of airworthiness issued on or before April 6, 
2017.
    (1) Model A318-111, -112, -121, and -122 airplanes.
    (2) Model A319-111, -112, -113, -114, -115, -131, -132, and -133 
airplanes.
    (3) Model A320-211, -212, -214, -216, -231, -232, -233, -251N, 
and -271N airplanes.
    (4) Model A321-111, -112, -131, -211, -212, -213, -231, -232, -
251N, -253N, and -271N airplanes.

(d) Subject

    Air Transport Association (ATA) of America Code 05, Time Limits/
Maintenance Checks.

(e) Reason

    This AD was prompted by a revision of an airworthiness 
limitation item (ALI) document, which requires more restrictive 
maintenance requirements and airworthiness limitations. We are 
issuing this AD to address a safety-significant latent failure (that 
is not annunciated), which, in combination with one or more other 
specific failures or events, could result in a hazardous or 
catastrophic failure condition.

(f) Compliance

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

(g) Revision of Maintenance or Inspection Program

    Within 90 days after the effective date of this AD, revise the 
maintenance or inspection program, as applicable, to incorporate the 
information specified in Airbus A318/A319/A320/A321 Airworthiness 
Limitations Section (ALS) Part 3, Certification Maintenance 
Requirements (CMR), Revision 05, dated April 6, 2017 (``ALS Part 3 
CMR, R5''). The initial compliance time for accomplishing the tasks 
specified in ALS Part 3 CMR, R5, is at the applicable time specified 
in ALS Part 3 CMR, R5, or within 90 days after the effective date of 
this AD, whichever occurs later.

(h) Terminating Actions for AD 2017-25-04

    Accomplishing the actions required by paragraph (g) of this AD 
terminates all of the requirements of AD 2017-25-04.

(i) No Alternative Actions or Intervals

    After the maintenance or inspection program, as applicable, has 
been revised as required by paragraph (g) of this AD, no alternative 
actions (e.g., inspections) or intervals may be used unless the 
actions or intervals are approved as an alternative method of 
compliance (AMOC) in accordance with the procedures specified in 
paragraph (j)(1) of this AD.

(j) 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 (k)(2) of this AD. Information 
may be emailed to: [email protected].
    (i) 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.
    (ii) AMOCs applicable previously for AD 2017-25-04 or AD 2014-
22-08, Amendment 39-18013 (79 FR 67042, November 12, 2014) that 
require incorporation of ALS Part 3 CMR, R5, are considered approved 
as AMOCs for the corresponding provisions of this AD.
    (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 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.

(k) Related Information

    (1) Refer to Mandatory Continuing Airworthiness Information 
(MCAI) EASA AD

[[Page 33162]]

2017-0168, dated September 7, 2017, 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-
2018-0554.
    (2) For more information about this AD, contact Sanjay Ralhan, 
Aerospace Engineer, International Section, Transport Standards 
Branch, FAA, 2200 South 216th St., Des Moines, WA 98198; telephone 
and fax 206-231-3223.
    (3) For service information identified in this AD, contact 
Airbus, Airworthiness Office--EIAS, Rond-Point Emile Dewoitine No: 
2, 31700 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 service information at the 
FAA, Transport Standards Branch, 2200 South 216th St., Des Moines, 
WA. For information on the availability of this material at the FAA, 
call 206-231-3195.

    Issued in Des Moines, Washington, on June 19, 2018.
Michael Kaszycki,
Acting Director, System Oversight Division, Aircraft Certification 
Service.
[FR Doc. 2018-13781 Filed 7-16-18; 8:45 am]
 BILLING CODE 4910-13-P