Airworthiness Directives; The Boeing Company Airplanes, 45037-45040 [2018-18995]

Download as PDF Federal Register / Vol. 83, No. 172 / Wednesday, September 5, 2018 / Rules and Regulations daltland on DSKBBV9HB2PROD with RULES instrumentation specified in 49 CFR part 572, subpart E filtered in accordance with SAE International (SAE) recommended practice J211/1, ‘‘Instrumentation for Impact Test—Part 1—Electronic Instrumentation.’’ c. The occupant must not interact with the armrest or other seat components in any manner significantly different than would be expected for a forward-facing seat installation. 5. Pelvis Criteria: Any part of the load-bearing portion of the bottom of the ATD pelvis must not translate beyond the edges of the seat bottom seat-cushion supporting structure. 6. Femur Criteria: Axial rotation of the upper leg (about the z-axis of the femur per SAE Recommended Practice J211/1) must be limited to 35 degrees from the nominal seated position. Evaluation during rebound does not need to be considered. 7. ATD and Test Conditions: Longitudinal tests conducted to measure the injury criteria above must be performed with the FAA Hybrid III ATD, as described in SAE 1999–01– 1609, ‘‘A Lumbar Spine Modification to the Hybrid III ATD for Aircraft Seat Tests.’’ The tests must be conducted with an undeformed floor, at the mostcritical yaw cases for injury and with all lateral structural supports (e.g. armrests or walls) installed. Note: Boeing must demonstrate that the installation of seats via plinths or pallets meets all applicable requirements. Compliance with the guidance contained in policy memorandum PS–ANM–100–2000– 00123, ‘‘Guidance for Demonstrating Compliance with Seat Dynamic Testing for Plinths and Pallets,’’ dated February 2, 2000, is acceptable to the FAA. 8. Inflatable Airbag Restraint Systems Special Conditions: If inflatable airbag restraint systems are installed, the airbag systems must meet the requirements in one of the airbag (inflatable restraint) special conditions applicable to the Boeing Model 747–8 airplane. Issued in Des Moines, Washington, on August 22, 2018. Victor Wicklund, Manager, Transport Standards Branch, Policy and Innovation Division, Aircraft Certification Service. [FR Doc. 2018–19216 Filed 9–4–18; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910–13–P VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:03 Sep 04, 2018 Jkt 244001 DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Part 25 [Docket No. FAA–2018–0335; Special Conditions No. 25–725–SC] Special Conditions: Bombardier Inc., Model BD–700–2A12 and BD–700– 2A13 Series Airplanes; Flight Envelope Protection: High Incidence Protection System Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT. ACTION: Final special conditions; correction. AGENCY: The FAA is correcting an error that appeared in the Federal Register on May 1, 2018, for special conditions No. 25–725–SC, Docket No. FAA–2018–0335. As published, there was an error in the citation and the correct citation has been added. DATES: Effective on Bombardier on September 5, 2018. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Joe Jacobsen, Airplane and Flight Crew Interface, AIR–671, Transport Standards Branch, Policy and Innovation Division, Aircraft Certification Service, Federal Aviation Administration, 2200 South 216th Street, Des Moines, Washington 98198; telephone and fax 206–231– 3158; email Joe.Jacobsen@faa.gov. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: 45037 May 1, 2018 (83 FR 18934), make the following correction: On page 18938, column 2, under part II, paragraph 7, correct ‘‘§ 25.143(j)(2)(i)’’ to read ‘‘§ 25.143(j)(1)’’. Issued in Des Moines, Washington, on August 27, 2018. Victor Wicklund, Manager, Transport Standards Branch, Policy and Innovation Division, Aircraft Certification Service. [FR Doc. 2018–19215 Filed 9–4–18; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910–13–P DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration SUMMARY: Background On April 25, 2018, the FAA issued Special Conditions No. 25–725–SC, Docket No. FAA–2018–0335, which was published in the Federal Register on May 1, 2018 (83 FR 18934). Those special conditions pertain to the high incidence protection system that replaces the stall warning system during normal operating conditions, prohibits the airplane from stalling, limits the angle of attack at which the airplane can be flown during normal low speed operation, and cannot be overridden by the flight crew for Bombardier Model BD–700–2A12 and BD–700–2A13 series airplanes. As published, part II, paragraph 7 of the final special conditions cited § 25.143(j)(2)(i) instead of § 25.143(j)(1). There are no substantive changes to the document and it was apparent that § 25.143(j)(1) should have been referenced from the beginning. Correction In the final special conditions document FR Doc. 2018–09126 (Filed 4–30–2018; 8:45 a.m.), published on PO 00000 Frm 00007 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 14 CFR Part 39 [Docket No. FAA–2018–0163; Product Identifier 2017–NM–168–AD; Amendment 39–19386; AD 2018–18–07] RIN 2120–AA64 Airworthiness Directives; The Boeing Company Airplanes Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT. ACTION: Final rule. AGENCY: We are adopting a new airworthiness directive (AD) for certain The Boeing Company Model 757 airplanes. This AD was prompted by an evaluation by the design approval holder (DAH) indicating that the longitudinal lap splices of the fuselage skin are subject to widespread fatigue damage (WFD). This AD requires repetitive inspections of the longitudinal lap splices of the fuselage skin for cracking and protruding fasteners, and applicable corrective actions. We are issuing this AD to address the unsafe condition on these products. DATES: This AD is effective October 10, 2018. The Director of the Federal Register approved the incorporation by reference of a certain publication listed in this AD as of October 10, 2018. ADDRESSES: For service information identified in this final rule, contact Boeing Commercial Airplanes, Attention: Contractual & Data Services (C&DS), 2600 Westminster Blvd., MC 110–SK57, Seal Beach, CA 90740–5600; telephone 562–797–1717; internet https://www.myboeingfleet.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. SUMMARY: E:\FR\FM\05SER1.SGM 05SER1 45038 Federal Register / Vol. 83, No. 172 / Wednesday, September 5, 2018 / Rules and Regulations It is also available on the internet at http://www.regulations.gov by searching for and locating Docket No. FAA–2018– 0163. 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– 0163; 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 final rule, the regulatory evaluation, any comments received, and other information. The address for Docket Operations (phone: 800–647–5527) is Docket Operations, 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: David Truong, Aerospace Engineer, Airframe Section, Los Angeles ACO Branch, FAA, 3960 Paramount Boulevard, Lakewood, CA 90712–4137; phone: 562–627–5224; fax: 562–627– 5210; email: david.truong@faa.gov. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Discussion We issued a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) to amend 14 CFR part 39 by adding an AD that would apply to certain The Boeing Company Model 757 airplanes. The NPRM published in the Federal Register on March 2, 2018 (83 FR 8951). The NPRM was prompted by an evaluation by the DAH indicating that the longitudinal lap splices of the fuselage skin are subject to WFD. The NPRM proposed to require repetitive inspections of the longitudinal lap splices of the fuselage skin for cracking and protruding fasteners, and applicable corrective actions. We are issuing this AD to address fatigue cracking of the longitudinal lap splices of the fuselage skin, which could result in reduced structural integrity of the airplane. daltland on DSKBBV9HB2PROD with RULES Comments We gave the public the opportunity to participate in developing this final rule. The following presents the comments received on the NPRM and the FAA’s response to each comment. United Airlines concurs with the actions in the NPRM. Effect of Winglets on Accomplishment of the Proposed Actions Aviation Partners Boeing stated that accomplishing the supplemental type certificate (STC) ST01518SE does not VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:03 Sep 04, 2018 Jkt 244001 affect the actions specified in the NPRM. We agree with the commenter. We have redesignated paragraph (c) of the proposed AD as paragraph (c)(1) of this AD and added paragraph (c)(2) to this AD to state that installation of STC ST01518SE does not affect the ability to accomplish the actions required by this AD. Therefore, for airplanes on which STC ST01518SE is installed, a ‘‘change in product’’ alternative method of compliance (AMOC) approval request is not necessary to comply with the requirements of 14 CFR 39.17. Request for Exception for Inspections of Existing FAA-Approved Repairs Delta Air Lines (Delta) asked that we add an exception to allow existing FAAapproved repairs to be exempt from inspections. Delta stated that the note in Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 757– 53A0104, dated November 6, 2017, only specifies certain Boeing Commercial Airplanes Organization Designation Authorization (ODA) approved repairs are exempt from inspections. Delta stated that limiting approval of this exception to the Boeing ODA only would mean that operators would have to request an alternative method of compliance to apply this inspection exception to any other FAA-approved repairs covering an affected inspection area. We agree with the commenter’s request to allow existing FAA-approved repairs to be exempt from inspections, for the reasons provided. We have added paragraph (h)(3) of this AD, under ‘‘Exceptions to Service Information Specifications,’’ to include that exception. Request To Include a Repair Method for Crack Findings Boeing asked that a statement be included in the proposed AD to specifically require repair of crack findings during inspections using a method approved in accordance with the procedures in paragraph (i) of the proposed AD. Boeing noted that this statement is provided in AD 2016–15– 04, Amendment 39–18595 (81 FR 49873, July 29, 2016), which includes lap splice widespread fatigue damage inspection requirements. Boeing added that this statement will make it clear and consistent with the intent of the repair instructions specified in the referenced service information. We acknowledge the commenter’s request. However, the requirement to repair cracks found during any inspections required by this AD is implicit in the requirements of paragraph (h)(2) of this AD. Unlike the PO 00000 Frm 00008 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 previous AD referenced by Boeing, this AD uses high-level language and requires accomplishment of the RC (required for compliance) steps in the service information, which include the inspection and repair actions. Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 757–53A0104, dated November 6, 2017, specifies to contact Boeing for repair instructions, as well as to contact Boeing for crack repair instructions or alternate inspection instructions, depending on the condition found. Paragraph (h)(2) of this AD requires operators to use a method approved in accordance with the procedures in paragraph (i) of this AD when the service information specifies to contact Boeing. Therefore, there is no need to include an additional statement to specifically require repair of crack findings during inspections using a method approved in accordance with the procedures in paragraph (i) of this AD. For clarity, we have revised the language in paragraph (h)(2) of this AD to match the language for the conditions specified in Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 757–53A0104, dated November 6, 2017. Request To Change or Omit Certain Inspections VT Mobile Aerospace Engineering (MAE), Inc., (VT MAE) and FedEx Express (FedEx) asked that we omit or change certain lap splice inspection areas. FedEx stated that its fleet of Model 757–200 airplanes was converted to a configuration similar to that of Model 757–200 special freighter airplanes, in accordance with the VT MAE STCs. VT MAE stated that Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 757–53A0104, dated November 6, 2017, identifies the FedEx Model 757–200 fleet as Groups 1, 3, and 4 airplanes, and certain lap splice inspection areas defined for those groups have been modified in accordance with the STCs. VT MAE added that the proposed inspections do not apply to those airplanes, or have reduced repetitive inspection intervals from those specified in Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 757–53A0104, dated November 6, 2017. We acknowledge the commenter’s requests. However, we do not consider it appropriate to include various provisions in an AD applicable only to individual airplane configurations or to a single operator’s unique use of an affected airplane. Under the provisions of paragraph (i) of this AD, we will consider requests for approval of AMOCs for the inspection areas and repetitive inspection intervals if sufficient data are submitted to substantiate that the AMOC would provide an acceptable level of safety. E:\FR\FM\05SER1.SGM 05SER1 Federal Register / Vol. 83, No. 172 / Wednesday, September 5, 2018 / Rules and Regulations We have not changed this AD in this regard. Request To Include Repair Guidelines and Inspection Procedures Delta stated that while Boeing may not be able to include repair instructions for fuselage skin cracking at the longitudinal lap joints in all areas, repair guidelines should be included in Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 757– 53A0104, dated November 6, 2017, so that operators can start damage containment and initial repair actions until specific repair instructions are received from Boeing. We acknowledge the commenter’s concern. However, the referenced service information does refer to certain sections in the 757 Nondestructive Test (NDT) Manual to provide guidance for fuselage skin cracking conditions. Although operators may refer to the NDT for guidance, the repair must be done using a method approved in accordance with the procedures specified in paragraph (i) of this AD, as specified in paragraph (h)(2) of this AD. Also, waiting for Boeing to change the service information to include additional repair guidelines would delay the release of the AD, and the unsafe condition would not be addressed in a timely manner. Therefore, we have not changed this AD in this regard. Delta also asked that alternative inspection procedures for protruding head fasteners be included in the Accomplishment Instructions of Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 757–53A0104, dated November 6, 2017, so that an AMOC request is not necessary. We do not agree with the commenter’s request that Boeing revise the service information to include alternative inspection procedures for protruding head fasteners. Waiting for Boeing to change the service information to include alternative inspection procedures would delay the release of the AD, and the unsafe condition would not be addressed in a timely manner. Therefore, we have not changed this AD in this regard. Conclusion We reviewed the relevant data, considered the comments received, and determined that air safety and the public interest require adopting this final rule with the changes described previously and minor editorial changes. We have determined that these minor changes: 45039 • Are consistent with the intent that was proposed in the NPRM for addressing the unsafe condition; and • Do not add any additional burden upon the public than was already proposed in the NPRM. We also determined that these changes will not increase the economic burden on any operator or increase the scope of this final rule. Related Service Information Under 1 CFR Part 51 We reviewed Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 757–53A0104, dated November 6, 2017. The service information describes procedures for visual and eddy current inspections of the longitudinal lap splices of the fuselage skin for cracking and protruding head fasteners. This service information is reasonably available because the interested parties have access to it through their normal course of business or by the means identified in the ADDRESSES section. Costs of Compliance We estimate that this AD affects 509 airplanes of U.S. registry. We estimate the following costs to comply with this AD: ESTIMATED COSTS Action Labor cost Inspections ........................ 367 work-hours × $85 per hour = $31,195 per inspection cycle. We have received no definitive data that will enable us to provide cost estimates for the on-condition repairs specified in this AD. daltland on DSKBBV9HB2PROD with RULES Authority for This Rulemaking Title 49 of the United States Code specifies the FAA’s authority to issue rules on aviation safety. Subtitle I, section 106, describes the authority of the FAA Administrator. Subtitle VII: Aviation Programs, describes in more detail the scope of the Agency’s authority. 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 VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:03 Sep 04, 2018 Jkt 244001 Parts cost Cost per product $0 $31,195 per inspection cycle. products identified in this rulemaking action. This AD is issued in accordance with authority delegated by the Executive Director, Aircraft Certification Service, as authorized by FAA Order 8000.51C. In accordance with that order, issuance 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 and associated appliances to the Director of the System Oversight Division. 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. Frm 00009 Fmt 4700 $15,878,255 per inspection cycle. For the reasons discussed above, I certify that this AD: (1) Is not a ‘‘significant regulatory action’’ under Executive Order 12866, (2) Is not a ‘‘significant rule’’ under DOT Regulatory Policies and Procedures (44 FR 11034, February 26, 1979), (3) Will not affect intrastate aviation in Alaska, and (4) Will not have a significant economic impact, positive or negative, on a substantial number of small entities under the criteria of the Regulatory Flexibility Act. List of Subjects in 14 CFR Part 39 Regulatory Findings PO 00000 Cost on U.S. operators Sfmt 4700 Air transportation, Aircraft, Aviation safety, Incorporation by reference, Safety. Adoption of the Amendment Accordingly, under the authority delegated to me by the Administrator, the FAA amends 14 CFR part 39 as follows: E:\FR\FM\05SER1.SGM 05SER1 45040 Federal Register / Vol. 83, No. 172 / Wednesday, September 5, 2018 / Rules and Regulations PART 39—AIRWORTHINESS DIRECTIVES 1. The authority citation for part 39 continues to read as follows: ■ Authority: 49 U.S.C. 106(g), 40113, 44701. § 39.13 [Amended] 2. The FAA amends § 39.13 by adding the following new airworthiness directive (AD): ■ 2018–18–07 The Boeing Company: Amendment 39–19386; Docket No. FAA–2018–0163; Product Identifier 2017–NM–168–AD. (a) Effective Date This AD is effective October 10, 2018. (b) Affected ADs None. (c) Applicability (1) This AD applies to The Boeing Company Model 757–200, –200PF, –200CB, and –300 series airplanes, certificated in any category, as identified in Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 757–53A0104, dated November 6, 2017. (2) Installation of Supplemental Type Certificate (STC) ST01518SE (http:// rgl.faa.gov/Regulatory_and_Guidance_ Library/rgstc.nsf/0/312bc296830a925c 86257c85006d1b1f/$FILE/ST01518SE.pdf) does not affect the ability to accomplish the actions required by this AD. Therefore, for airplanes on which STC ST01518SE is installed, a ‘‘change in product’’ alternative method of compliance (AMOC) approval request is not necessary to comply with the requirements of 14 CFR 39.17. (d) Subject Air Transport Association (ATA) of America Code 53, Fuselage. (e) Unsafe Condition This AD was prompted by an evaluation by the design approval holder indicating that the longitudinal lap splices of the fuselage skin are subject to widespread fatigue damage. We are issuing this AD to address fatigue cracking of the longitudinal lap splices of the fuselage skin, which could result in reduced structural integrity of the airplane. (f) Compliance Comply with this AD within the compliance times specified, unless already done. daltland on DSKBBV9HB2PROD with RULES (g) Required Actions Except as specified in paragraph (h) of this AD: At the applicable times specified in paragraph 1.E., ‘‘Compliance,’’ of Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 757–53A0104, dated November 6, 2017, do all applicable actions identified as ‘‘RC’’ (required for compliance) in, and in accordance with, the Accomplishment Instructions of Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 757–53A0104, dated November 6, 2017. VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:03 Sep 04, 2018 Jkt 244001 (h) Exceptions to Service Information Specifications (1) For purposes of determining compliance with the requirements of this AD, where Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 757– 53A0104, dated November 6, 2017, uses the phrase ‘‘the original issue date of this service bulletin,’’ this AD requires using ‘‘the effective date of this AD.’’ (2) Where Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 757–53A0104, dated November 6, 2017, specifies contacting Boeing for repair instructions, or contacting Boeing for crack repair instructions or alternate inspection instructions, and specifies that action as RC: This AD requires doing the repair, or the alternate inspection and applicable corrective actions, using a method approved in accordance with the procedures specified in paragraph (i) of this AD. (3) Inspections performed in accordance with Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 757– 53A0104, dated November 6, 2017, are not necessary in areas where existing FAAapproved repairs cover the affected inspection areas; provided the outermost repair doubler extends a minimum of three rows of fasteners above and below the original group of lap splice fasteners subject to the inspection. Damage tolerance inspections specified for existing repairs must continue. Inspections outside of the repaired boundaries are still required as specified in Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 757–53A0104, dated November 6, 2017. (i) Alternative Methods of Compliance (AMOCs) (1) The Manager, Los Angeles ACO 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 manager of the certification office, send it to the attention of the person identified in paragraph (j) of this AD. Information may be emailed to: 9-ANMLAACO-AMOC-Requests@faa.gov. (2) 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. (3) An AMOC that provides an acceptable level of safety may be used for any repair, modification, or alteration required by this AD if it is approved by the Boeing Commercial Airplanes Designation Authorization (ODA) that has been authorized by the Manager, Los Angeles ACO Branch, to make those findings. To be approved, the repair method, modification deviation, or alteration deviation must meet the certification basis of the airplane, and the approval must specifically refer to this AD. (4) Except as required by paragraph (h)(2) of this AD: For service information that contains steps that are labeled as RC, the provisions of paragraphs (i)(4)(i) and (i)(4)(ii) of this AD apply. (i) The steps labeled as RC, including substeps under an RC step and any figures identified in an RC step, must be done to comply with the AD. If a step or substep is PO 00000 Frm 00010 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 9990 labeled ‘‘RC Exempt,’’ then the RC requirement is removed from that step or substep. An AMOC is required for any deviations to RC steps, including substeps and identified figures. (ii) Steps not labeled as RC may be deviated from using accepted methods in accordance with the operator’s maintenance or inspection program without obtaining approval of an AMOC, provided the RC steps, including substeps and identified figures, can still be done as specified, and the airplane can be put back in an airworthy condition. (j) Related Information For more information about this AD, contact David Truong, Aerospace Engineer, Airframe Section, Los Angeles ACO Branch, FAA, 3960 Paramount Boulevard, Lakewood, CA 90712–4137; phone: 562–627–5224; fax: 562–627–5210; email: david.truong@faa.gov. (k) Material Incorporated by Reference (1) The Director of the Federal Register approved the incorporation by reference (IBR) of the service information listed in this paragraph under 5 U.S.C. 552(a) and 1 CFR part 51. (2) You must use this service information as applicable to do the actions required by this AD, unless the AD specifies otherwise. (i) Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 757– 53A0104, dated November 6, 2017. (ii) Reserved. (3) For service information identified in this AD, contact Boeing Commercial Airplanes, Attention: Contractual & Data Services (C&DS), 2600 Westminster Blvd., MC 110–SK57, Seal Beach, CA 90740–5600; telephone 562–797–1717; internet https:// www.myboeingfleet.com. (4) 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. (5) You may view this service information that is incorporated by reference at the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA). For information on the availability of this material at NARA, call 202–741–6030, or go to: http:// www.archives.gov/federal-register/cfr/ibrlocations.html. Issued in Des Moines, Washington, on August 16, 2018. Michael Kaszycki, Acting Director, System Oversight Division, Aircraft Certification Service. [FR Doc. 2018–18995 Filed 9–4–18; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910–13–P E:\FR\FM\05SER1.SGM 05SER1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 83, Number 172 (Wednesday, September 5, 2018)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Pages 45037-45040]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2018-18995]


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DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION

Federal Aviation Administration

14 CFR Part 39

[Docket No. FAA-2018-0163; Product Identifier 2017-NM-168-AD; Amendment 
39-19386; AD 2018-18-07]
RIN 2120-AA64


Airworthiness Directives; The Boeing Company Airplanes

AGENCY: Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT.

ACTION: Final rule.

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

SUMMARY: We are adopting a new airworthiness directive (AD) for certain 
The Boeing Company Model 757 airplanes. This AD was prompted by an 
evaluation by the design approval holder (DAH) indicating that the 
longitudinal lap splices of the fuselage skin are subject to widespread 
fatigue damage (WFD). This AD requires repetitive inspections of the 
longitudinal lap splices of the fuselage skin for cracking and 
protruding fasteners, and applicable corrective actions. We are issuing 
this AD to address the unsafe condition on these products.

DATES: This AD is effective October 10, 2018.
    The Director of the Federal Register approved the incorporation by 
reference of a certain publication listed in this AD as of October 10, 
2018.

ADDRESSES: For service information identified in this final rule, 
contact Boeing Commercial Airplanes, Attention: Contractual & Data 
Services (C&DS), 2600 Westminster Blvd., MC 110-SK57, Seal Beach, CA 
90740-5600; telephone 562-797-1717; internet https://www.myboeingfleet.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.

[[Page 45038]]

It is also available on the internet at http://www.regulations.gov by 
searching for and locating Docket No. FAA-2018-0163.

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-
0163; 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 final rule, the regulatory evaluation, any comments received, and 
other information. The address for Docket Operations (phone: 800-647-
5527) is Docket Operations, 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: David Truong, Aerospace Engineer, 
Airframe Section, Los Angeles ACO Branch, FAA, 3960 Paramount 
Boulevard, Lakewood, CA 90712-4137; phone: 562-627-5224; fax: 562-627-
5210; email: [email protected].

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: 

Discussion

    We issued a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) to amend 14 CFR 
part 39 by adding an AD that would apply to certain The Boeing Company 
Model 757 airplanes. The NPRM published in the Federal Register on 
March 2, 2018 (83 FR 8951). The NPRM was prompted by an evaluation by 
the DAH indicating that the longitudinal lap splices of the fuselage 
skin are subject to WFD. The NPRM proposed to require repetitive 
inspections of the longitudinal lap splices of the fuselage skin for 
cracking and protruding fasteners, and applicable corrective actions. 
We are issuing this AD to address fatigue cracking of the longitudinal 
lap splices of the fuselage skin, which could result in reduced 
structural integrity of the airplane.

Comments

    We gave the public the opportunity to participate in developing 
this final rule. The following presents the comments received on the 
NPRM and the FAA's response to each comment. United Airlines concurs 
with the actions in the NPRM.

Effect of Winglets on Accomplishment of the Proposed Actions

    Aviation Partners Boeing stated that accomplishing the supplemental 
type certificate (STC) ST01518SE does not affect the actions specified 
in the NPRM.
    We agree with the commenter. We have redesignated paragraph (c) of 
the proposed AD as paragraph (c)(1) of this AD and added paragraph 
(c)(2) to this AD to state that installation of STC ST01518SE does not 
affect the ability to accomplish the actions required by this AD. 
Therefore, for airplanes on which STC ST01518SE is installed, a 
``change in product'' alternative method of compliance (AMOC) approval 
request is not necessary to comply with the requirements of 14 CFR 
39.17.

Request for Exception for Inspections of Existing FAA-Approved Repairs

    Delta Air Lines (Delta) asked that we add an exception to allow 
existing FAA-approved repairs to be exempt from inspections. Delta 
stated that the note in Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 757-53A0104, 
dated November 6, 2017, only specifies certain Boeing Commercial 
Airplanes Organization Designation Authorization (ODA) approved repairs 
are exempt from inspections. Delta stated that limiting approval of 
this exception to the Boeing ODA only would mean that operators would 
have to request an alternative method of compliance to apply this 
inspection exception to any other FAA-approved repairs covering an 
affected inspection area.
    We agree with the commenter's request to allow existing FAA-
approved repairs to be exempt from inspections, for the reasons 
provided. We have added paragraph (h)(3) of this AD, under ``Exceptions 
to Service Information Specifications,'' to include that exception.

Request To Include a Repair Method for Crack Findings

    Boeing asked that a statement be included in the proposed AD to 
specifically require repair of crack findings during inspections using 
a method approved in accordance with the procedures in paragraph (i) of 
the proposed AD. Boeing noted that this statement is provided in AD 
2016-15-04, Amendment 39-18595 (81 FR 49873, July 29, 2016), which 
includes lap splice widespread fatigue damage inspection requirements. 
Boeing added that this statement will make it clear and consistent with 
the intent of the repair instructions specified in the referenced 
service information.
    We acknowledge the commenter's request. However, the requirement to 
repair cracks found during any inspections required by this AD is 
implicit in the requirements of paragraph (h)(2) of this AD. Unlike the 
previous AD referenced by Boeing, this AD uses high-level language and 
requires accomplishment of the RC (required for compliance) steps in 
the service information, which include the inspection and repair 
actions. Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 757-53A0104, dated November 6, 
2017, specifies to contact Boeing for repair instructions, as well as 
to contact Boeing for crack repair instructions or alternate inspection 
instructions, depending on the condition found. Paragraph (h)(2) of 
this AD requires operators to use a method approved in accordance with 
the procedures in paragraph (i) of this AD when the service information 
specifies to contact Boeing. Therefore, there is no need to include an 
additional statement to specifically require repair of crack findings 
during inspections using a method approved in accordance with the 
procedures in paragraph (i) of this AD. For clarity, we have revised 
the language in paragraph (h)(2) of this AD to match the language for 
the conditions specified in Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 757-53A0104, 
dated November 6, 2017.

Request To Change or Omit Certain Inspections

    VT Mobile Aerospace Engineering (MAE), Inc., (VT MAE) and FedEx 
Express (FedEx) asked that we omit or change certain lap splice 
inspection areas. FedEx stated that its fleet of Model 757-200 
airplanes was converted to a configuration similar to that of Model 
757-200 special freighter airplanes, in accordance with the VT MAE 
STCs. VT MAE stated that Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 757-53A0104, 
dated November 6, 2017, identifies the FedEx Model 757-200 fleet as 
Groups 1, 3, and 4 airplanes, and certain lap splice inspection areas 
defined for those groups have been modified in accordance with the 
STCs. VT MAE added that the proposed inspections do not apply to those 
airplanes, or have reduced repetitive inspection intervals from those 
specified in Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 757-53A0104, dated November 
6, 2017.
    We acknowledge the commenter's requests. However, we do not 
consider it appropriate to include various provisions in an AD 
applicable only to individual airplane configurations or to a single 
operator's unique use of an affected airplane. Under the provisions of 
paragraph (i) of this AD, we will consider requests for approval of 
AMOCs for the inspection areas and repetitive inspection intervals if 
sufficient data are submitted to substantiate that the AMOC would 
provide an acceptable level of safety.

[[Page 45039]]

We have not changed this AD in this regard.

Request To Include Repair Guidelines and Inspection Procedures

    Delta stated that while Boeing may not be able to include repair 
instructions for fuselage skin cracking at the longitudinal lap joints 
in all areas, repair guidelines should be included in Boeing Alert 
Service Bulletin 757-53A0104, dated November 6, 2017, so that operators 
can start damage containment and initial repair actions until specific 
repair instructions are received from Boeing.
    We acknowledge the commenter's concern. However, the referenced 
service information does refer to certain sections in the 757 
Nondestructive Test (NDT) Manual to provide guidance for fuselage skin 
cracking conditions. Although operators may refer to the NDT for 
guidance, the repair must be done using a method approved in accordance 
with the procedures specified in paragraph (i) of this AD, as specified 
in paragraph (h)(2) of this AD. Also, waiting for Boeing to change the 
service information to include additional repair guidelines would delay 
the release of the AD, and the unsafe condition would not be addressed 
in a timely manner. Therefore, we have not changed this AD in this 
regard.
    Delta also asked that alternative inspection procedures for 
protruding head fasteners be included in the Accomplishment 
Instructions of Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 757-53A0104, dated 
November 6, 2017, so that an AMOC request is not necessary.
    We do not agree with the commenter's request that Boeing revise the 
service information to include alternative inspection procedures for 
protruding head fasteners. Waiting for Boeing to change the service 
information to include alternative inspection procedures would delay 
the release of the AD, and the unsafe condition would not be addressed 
in a timely manner. Therefore, we have not changed this AD in this 
regard.

Conclusion

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

Related Service Information Under 1 CFR Part 51

    We reviewed Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 757-53A0104, dated 
November 6, 2017. The service information describes procedures for 
visual and eddy current inspections of the longitudinal lap splices of 
the fuselage skin for cracking and protruding head fasteners. This 
service information is reasonably available because the interested 
parties have access to it through their normal course of business or by 
the means identified in the ADDRESSES section.

Costs of Compliance

    We estimate that this AD affects 509 airplanes of U.S. registry. We 
estimate the following costs to comply with this AD:

                                                 Estimated Costs
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                                                 Cost on U.S.
              Action                    Labor cost        Parts cost      Cost per product        operators
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Inspections......................  367 work-hours x                 $0  $31,195 per          $15,878,255 per
                                    $85 per hour =                       inspection cycle.    inspection cycle.
                                    $31,195 per
                                    inspection cycle.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    We have received no definitive data that will enable us to provide 
cost estimates for the on-condition repairs specified in this AD.

Authority for This Rulemaking

    Title 49 of the United States Code specifies the FAA's authority to 
issue rules on aviation safety. Subtitle I, section 106, describes the 
authority of the FAA Administrator. Subtitle VII: Aviation Programs, 
describes in more detail the scope of the Agency's authority.
    We are issuing this rulemaking under the authority described in 
Subtitle VII, Part A, Subpart III, Section 44701: ``General 
requirements.'' Under that section, Congress charges the FAA with 
promoting safe flight of civil aircraft in air commerce by prescribing 
regulations for practices, methods, and procedures the Administrator 
finds necessary for safety in air commerce. This regulation is within 
the scope of that authority because it addresses an unsafe condition 
that is likely to exist or develop on products identified in this 
rulemaking action.
    This AD is issued in accordance with authority delegated by the 
Executive Director, Aircraft Certification Service, as authorized by 
FAA Order 8000.51C. In accordance with that order, issuance 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 and 
associated appliances to the Director of the System Oversight Division.

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, and
    (4) Will not have a significant economic impact, positive or 
negative, on a substantial number of small entities under the criteria 
of the Regulatory Flexibility Act.

List of Subjects in 14 CFR Part 39

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

Adoption of the Amendment

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

[[Page 45040]]

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):

2018-18-07 The Boeing Company: Amendment 39-19386; Docket No. FAA-
2018-0163; Product Identifier 2017-NM-168-AD.

(a) Effective Date

    This AD is effective October 10, 2018.

(b) Affected ADs

    None.

(c) Applicability

    (1) This AD applies to The Boeing Company Model 757-200, -200PF, 
-200CB, and -300 series airplanes, certificated in any category, as 
identified in Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 757-53A0104, dated 
November 6, 2017.
    (2) Installation of Supplemental Type Certificate (STC) 
ST01518SE (http://rgl.faa.gov/Regulatory_and_Guidance_Library/
rgstc.nsf/0/312bc296830a925c86257c85006d1b1f/$FILE/ST01518SE.pdf) 
does not affect the ability to accomplish the actions required by 
this AD. Therefore, for airplanes on which STC ST01518SE is 
installed, a ``change in product'' alternative method of compliance 
(AMOC) approval request is not necessary to comply with the 
requirements of 14 CFR 39.17.

(d) Subject

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

(e) Unsafe Condition

    This AD was prompted by an evaluation by the design approval 
holder indicating that the longitudinal lap splices of the fuselage 
skin are subject to widespread fatigue damage. We are issuing this 
AD to address fatigue cracking of the longitudinal lap splices of 
the fuselage skin, which could result in reduced structural 
integrity of the airplane.

(f) Compliance

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

(g) Required Actions

    Except as specified in paragraph (h) of this AD: At the 
applicable times specified in paragraph 1.E., ``Compliance,'' of 
Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 757-53A0104, dated November 6, 2017, 
do all applicable actions identified as ``RC'' (required for 
compliance) in, and in accordance with, the Accomplishment 
Instructions of Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 757-53A0104, dated 
November 6, 2017.

(h) Exceptions to Service Information Specifications

    (1) For purposes of determining compliance with the requirements 
of this AD, where Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 757-53A0104, dated 
November 6, 2017, uses the phrase ``the original issue date of this 
service bulletin,'' this AD requires using ``the effective date of 
this AD.''
    (2) Where Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 757-53A0104, dated 
November 6, 2017, specifies contacting Boeing for repair 
instructions, or contacting Boeing for crack repair instructions or 
alternate inspection instructions, and specifies that action as RC: 
This AD requires doing the repair, or the alternate inspection and 
applicable corrective actions, using a method approved in accordance 
with the procedures specified in paragraph (i) of this AD.
    (3) Inspections performed in accordance with Boeing Alert 
Service Bulletin 757-53A0104, dated November 6, 2017, are not 
necessary in areas where existing FAA-approved repairs cover the 
affected inspection areas; provided the outermost repair doubler 
extends a minimum of three rows of fasteners above and below the 
original group of lap splice fasteners subject to the inspection. 
Damage tolerance inspections specified for existing repairs must 
continue. Inspections outside of the repaired boundaries are still 
required as specified in Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 757-53A0104, 
dated November 6, 2017.

(i) Alternative Methods of Compliance (AMOCs)

    (1) The Manager, Los Angeles ACO 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 manager of the certification office, send it to the attention of 
the person identified in paragraph (j) of this AD. Information may 
be emailed to: [email protected].
    (2) 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.
    (3) An AMOC that provides an acceptable level of safety may be 
used for any repair, modification, or alteration required by this AD 
if it is approved by the Boeing Commercial Airplanes Designation 
Authorization (ODA) that has been authorized by the Manager, Los 
Angeles ACO Branch, to make those findings. To be approved, the 
repair method, modification deviation, or alteration deviation must 
meet the certification basis of the airplane, and the approval must 
specifically refer to this AD.
    (4) Except as required by paragraph (h)(2) of this AD: For 
service information that contains steps that are labeled as RC, the 
provisions of paragraphs (i)(4)(i) and (i)(4)(ii) of this AD apply.
    (i) The steps labeled as RC, including substeps under an RC step 
and any figures identified in an RC step, must be done to comply 
with the AD. If a step or substep is labeled ``RC Exempt,'' then the 
RC requirement is removed from that step or substep. An AMOC is 
required for any deviations to RC steps, including substeps and 
identified figures.
    (ii) Steps not labeled as RC may be deviated from using accepted 
methods in accordance with the operator's maintenance or inspection 
program without obtaining approval of an AMOC, provided the RC 
steps, including substeps and identified figures, can still be done 
as specified, and the airplane can be put back in an airworthy 
condition.

(j) Related Information

    For more information about this AD, contact David Truong, 
Aerospace Engineer, Airframe Section, Los Angeles ACO Branch, FAA, 
3960 Paramount Boulevard, Lakewood, CA 90712-4137; phone: 562-627-
5224; fax: 562-627-5210; email: [email protected].

(k) Material Incorporated by Reference

    (1) The Director of the Federal Register approved the 
incorporation by reference (IBR) of the service information listed 
in this paragraph under 5 U.S.C. 552(a) and 1 CFR part 51.
    (2) You must use this service information as applicable to do 
the actions required by this AD, unless the AD specifies otherwise.
    (i) Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 757-53A0104, dated November 6, 
2017.
    (ii) Reserved.
    (3) For service information identified in this AD, contact 
Boeing Commercial Airplanes, Attention: Contractual & Data Services 
(C&DS), 2600 Westminster Blvd., MC 110-SK57, Seal Beach, CA 90740-
5600; telephone 562-797-1717; internet https://www.myboeingfleet.com.
    (4) 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.
    (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 Des Moines, Washington, on August 16, 2018.
Michael Kaszycki,
Acting Director, System Oversight Division, Aircraft Certification 
Service.
[FR Doc. 2018-18995 Filed 9-4-18; 8:45 am]
 BILLING CODE 4910-13-P