Airworthiness Directives; Airbus Helicopters, 8150-8153 [2020-02841]

Download as PDF 8150 Federal Register / Vol. 85, No. 30 / Thursday, February 13, 2020 / Rules and Regulations (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 this AD specifies otherwise. (i) European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) AD 2019–0188, dated July 31, 2019. (ii) [Reserved] (3) For information about EASA AD 2019– 0188, contact the EASA, Konrad-AdenauerUfer 3, 50668 Cologne, Germany; telephone +49 221 89990 6017; email ADs@ easa.europa.eu; internet www.easa.europa.eu. You may find this EASA AD on the EASA website at https:// ad.easa.europa.eu. (4) You may view this material 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. This material may be found in the AD docket on the internet at https://www.regulations.gov by searching for and locating Docket No. FAA–2019–0864. (5) You may view this material that is incorporated by reference at the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA). For information on the availability of this material at NARA, email fedreg.legal@ nara.gov, or go to: https://www.archives.gov/ federal-register/cfr/ibr-locations.html. Issued on January 30, 2020. Gaetano A. Sciortino, Deputy Director for Strategic Initiatives, Compliance & Airworthiness Division, Aircraft Certification Service. [FR Doc. 2020–02864 Filed 2–12–20; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910–13–P DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Part 39 [Docket No. FAA–2020–0125; Product Identifier 2019–SW–104–AD; Amendment 39–21027; AD 2020–02–23] RIN 2120–AA64 Examining the AD Docket Airworthiness Directives; Airbus Helicopters Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT. ACTION: Final rule; request for comments. AGENCY: The FAA is adopting a new airworthiness directive (AD) for certain Airbus Helicopters Model AS350B, AS350BA, AS350B1, AS350B2, AS350B3, AS350C, AS350D, A350D1, AS355E, AS355F, AS355F1, AS355F2, AS355N, and AS355NP helicopters. This AD requires repetitive inspections of the installation of the pull cables on jbell on DSKJLSW7X2PROD with RULES SUMMARY: VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:58 Feb 12, 2020 the emergency float kits. This AD was prompted by the results of an accident investigation and subsequent reports of difficulty pulling the emergency float kit float activation handle installed on the pilot cyclic. The FAA is issuing this AD to address the unsafe condition on these products. DATES: This AD is effective February 28, 2020. The Director of the Federal Register approved the incorporation by reference of a certain publication listed in this AD as of February 28, 2020. The FAA must receive comments on this AD by March 30, 2020. 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 https://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 final rule, contact Dart Aerospace LTD., 1270 Aberdeen St., Hawkesbury, ON, K6A 1K7, Canada; telephone: 1– 613–632–5200; Fax: 1–613–632–5246; or at www.dartaero.com. You may view this service information at the FAA, Office of the Regional Counsel, Southwest Region, 10101 Hillwood Pkwy, Room 6N–321, Fort Worth, TX 76177. For information on the availability of this material at the FAA, call 817–222–5110. It is also available on the internet at https://www.regulations.gov by searching for and locating Docket No. FAA–2020–0125. Jkt 250001 You may examine the AD docket on the internet at https:// www.regulations.gov by searching for and locating Docket No. FAA–2020– 0125; 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 street address for Docket Operations is listed above. Comments will be available in the AD docket shortly after receipt. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Johann S. Magana, Aerospace Engineer, PO 00000 Frm 00020 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 Cabin Safety and Environmental Systems Section, FAA, Los Angeles ACO Branch, 3960 Paramount Boulevard, Lakewood, CA 90712–4137; phone: 562–627–5322; fax: 562–627– 5210; email: johann.magana@faa.gov. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Discussion This AD is prompted by the results of an investigation of a March 11, 2018, fatal accident in which an Airbus Helicopters Model AS350B2 helicopter impacted a body of water during an autorotation. The left-hand and righthand emergency floats did not inflate symmetrically and the helicopter subsequently capsized. During the accident investigation, the FAA learned of reports of difficulty pulling the emergency float kit float activation handle installed on the pilot cyclic. Asymmetric inflation of the float system and difficulty deploying the float system from the float activation handle installed on the pilot cyclic can be caused by improperly installed pull cables. These emergency float kits utilize a system of pull cables to activate and release compressed gas from the float cylinders into the floats. Proper installation of the pull cables allows the two float cylinders installed on the aircraft to activate simultaneously, allowing for proper distribution of gas to all floats in the system. Improperly installed pull cables, if not addressed, could result in loss of the left- or righthand float, causing the helicopter to roll to one side but remain buoyant, or loss of both floats, causing the helicopter to capsize underwater. These emergency float systems are installed on Airbus Helicopters Model AS350B, AS350BA, AS350B1, AS350B2, AS350B3, AS350C, AS350D, and AS350D1 helicopters under Supplemental Type Certificate (STC) SR00470LA, and on Model AS355E, AS355F, AS355F1, AS355F2, AS355N, and AS355NP helicopters under STC SR00645LA. Both STCs are held by Apical Industries, Inc., d/b/a DART Aerospace (DART). Following the investigation, DART developed a test tool to verify correct installation and rigging of the pull cables and subsequently issued service information to provide instructions for using the test tool. The FAA approved these instructions to correct the unsafe condition on November 13, 2019. Accordingly, the FAA is issuing this AD to address the unsafe condition on these products. E:\FR\FM\13FER1.SGM 13FER1 Federal Register / Vol. 85, No. 30 / Thursday, February 13, 2020 / Rules and Regulations Related Service Information Under 1 CFR Part 51 develop in other products of the same type design. The FAA has reviewed DART Aerospace Service Bulletin SB–2018– 07, Revision D, dated November 25, 2019. This service information contains procedures for inspecting the installation of the pull cables on 20326series part-numbered emergency float kits (e.g., inspecting for activation pull forces on the float activation handle), readjusting the cable rigging if improperly installed, and contacting DART if readjusting the rigging is not successful. This service information also contains optional procedures for deactivating the emergency float system as inoperative. 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. AD Requirements This AD requires repetitive inspections of the installation of the pull cables on the emergency float kits and corrective action if necessary. Other Related Service Information The FAA has also reviewed DART Aerospace Service Bulletin SB–2018– 07, Revision B, dated October 8, 2019, and DART Aerospace Service Bulletin SB–2018–07, Revision C, dated November 14, 2019. The actions specified in these service bulletins are the same as those specified in DART Aerospace Service Bulletin SB–2018– 07, Revision D, dated November 25, 2019. DART Aerospace Service Bulletin SB–2018–07, Revision C, dated November 14, 2019, adds a note that includes a reference to the instructions for continued airworthiness for a specific float system configuration that was not in DART Aerospace Service Bulletin SB–2018–07, Revision B, dated October 8, 2019. DART Aerospace Service Bulletin SB–2018–07, Revision D, dated November 25, 2019, clarifies certain references to the operational instructions manual. These differences do not affect how operators would accomplish the actions necessary to address the identified unsafe condition. FAA’s Determination The FAA is issuing this AD after evaluating all the relevant information and determining the unsafe condition described previously is likely to exist or Differences Between This AD and the Service Information DART Aerospace Service Bulletin SB– 2018–07, Revision D, dated November 25, 2019, specifies accomplishing the actions before March 31, 2020, while this AD requires compliance within 100 hours time-in-service (TIS) or 30 days after the effective date of this AD, whichever occurs first. FAA’s Justification and Determination of the Effective Date Section 553(b)(3)(B) of the Administrative Procedure Act (5 U.S.C.) authorizes agencies to dispense with notice and comment procedures for rules when the agency, for ‘‘good cause’’ finds that those procedures are ‘‘impracticable, unnecessary, or contrary to the public interest.’’ Under this section, an agency, upon finding good cause, may issue a final rule without seeking comment prior to the rulemaking. An unsafe condition exists that requires the immediate adoption of this AD without providing an opportunity for public comments prior to adoption. The FAA has found that the risk to the flying public justifies waiving notice and comment prior to adoption of this rule because improperly installed pull cables may lead to asymmetric inflation of the float system or difficulty deploying the float system from the float activation handle installed on the pilot cyclic, which could result in the loss of one or more floats. Loss of the left- or right-hand float could cause the helicopter to roll to one side but remain buoyant, while loss of both floats could cause the helicopter to capsize underwater. Because of the high utilization rate of helicopters with these emergency float kits installed, and because these helicopters primarily conduct operations over water, the FAA determined a compliance time of no more than 100 hours TIS or 30 days, 8151 whichever occurs first, was required to correct the unsafe condition. This compliance time is shorter than the time necessary for the public to comment and for publication of the final rule. Therefore, notice and opportunity for prior public comment are impracticable and contrary to public interest pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 553(b)(3)(B). In addition, for the reasons stated above, the FAA finds that good cause exists pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 553(d) for making this amendment effective in less than 30 days. Comments Invited This AD is a final rule that involves requirements affecting flight safety and was not preceded by notice and an opportunity for public comment. However, the FAA invites you to send any written data, views, or arguments about this final rule. Send your comments to an address listed under the ADDRESSES section. Include the docket number FAA–2020–0125 and Product Identifier 2019–SW–104–AD at the beginning of your comments. The FAA specifically invites comments on the overall regulatory, economic, environmental, and energy aspects of this final rule. The FAA will consider all comments received by the closing date and may amend this final rule because of those comments. The FAA will post all comments received, without change, to https:// www.regulations.gov, including any personal information you provide. The FAA will also post a report summarizing each substantive verbal contact received about this final rule. Regulatory Flexibility Act The requirements of the Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA) do not apply when an agency finds good cause pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 553 to adopt a rule without prior notice and comment. Because FAA has determined that it has good cause to adopt this rule without notice and comment, RFA analysis is not required. Costs of Compliance The FAA estimates that this AD affects 71 helicopters of U.S. registry. The FAA estimates the following costs to comply with this AD: jbell on DSKJLSW7X2PROD with RULES ESTIMATED COSTS Action Labor cost Inspection ................................ 3 work-hours × $85 per hour = $255 per inspection ............. VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:58 Feb 12, 2020 Jkt 250001 PO 00000 Frm 00021 Fmt 4700 Cost per helicopter Parts cost Sfmt 4700 E:\FR\FM\13FER1.SGM $0 13FER1 $255 Cost on U.S. operators $18,105 8152 Federal Register / Vol. 85, No. 30 / Thursday, February 13, 2020 / Rules and Regulations The inspection requires the use of a pull cable test kit, which costs $2,000. Only one pull cable test kit is needed per operator such that the operator may use the same pull cable test kit on any affected helicopter. The FAA has no way of determining what on-condition actions may be required following the inspection required by this AD, the number of helicopters that might need on-condition actions, or the costs to perform the on-condition actions. According to the manufacturer, some or all of the costs of this AD may be covered under warranty, thereby reducing the cost impact on affected individuals. The FAA does not control warranty coverage for affected individuals. As a result, the FAA has included all known costs in the cost estimate. jbell on DSKJLSW7X2PROD 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. The FAA is 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. 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, and (2) Will not affect intrastate aviation in Alaska. List of Subjects in 14 CFR Part 39 Air transportation, Aircraft, Aviation safety, Incorporation by reference, Safety. VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:58 Feb 12, 2020 Jkt 250001 Adoption of the Amendment Accordingly, under the authority delegated to me by the Administrator, the FAA amends 14 CFR part 39 as follows: PART 39—AIRWORTHINESS DIRECTIVES 1. The authority citation for part 39 continues to read as follows: ■ Authority: 49 U.S.C. 106(g), 40113, 44701. § 39.13 [Amended] 2. The FAA amends § 39.13 by adding the following new airworthiness directive (AD): ■ 2020–02–23 Airbus Helicopters: Amendment 39–21027; Docket No. FAA–2020–0125; Product Identifier 2019–SW–104–AD. (a) Effective Date This AD is effective February 28, 2020. (b) Affected ADs None. (c) Applicability This AD applies to the helicopters identified in paragraphs (c)(1) and (2) of this AD, certificated in any category. (1) Airbus Helicopters Model AS350B, AS350BA, AS350B1, AS350B2, AS350B3, AS350C, AS350D, and AS350D1 helicopters, modified by supplemental type certificate (STC) SR00470LA. (2) Airbus Helicopters Model AS355E, AS355F, AS355F1, AS355F2, AS355N, and AS355NP helicopters, modified by STC SR00645LA. (d) Subject Air Transport Association (ATA) of America Code 25, Equipment/Furnishings, and 32, Landing gear. (e) Unsafe Condition This AD was prompted by reports of difficulty pulling the emergency float kit float activation handle installed on the pilot cyclic. The FAA is issuing this AD to address improperly installed pull cables, which can lead to difficulty deploying the float system from the float activation handle installed on the pilot cyclic, and could result in loss of the left- or right-hand float, causing the helicopter to roll to one side but remain buoyant, or loss of both floats causing the helicopter to capsize underwater. (f) Compliance Comply with this AD within the compliance times specified, unless already done. (g) Required Actions Within 100 hours time-in-service (TIS) or 30 days, whichever occurs first after the effective date of this AD, and thereafter at intervals not to exceed six months, inspect the installation of the pull cables on the emergency float kit and readjust the cable rigging if improperly installed, in accordance PO 00000 Frm 00022 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 with the Accomplishment Instructions, sections 1.0 through 1.4, of DART Aerospace Service Bulletin No. SB–2018–07, Revision D, dated November 25, 2019 (‘‘SB–2018–07, Revision D’’), except if the pull cable installation does not pass the test in section 1.3 after re-adjusting the cable rigging, you must comply with either paragraph (g)(1) or (2) of this AD before further flight: (1) Repair the pull cable installation. (2) Deactivate and placard the emergency float system as inoperative in accordance with the Accomplishment Instructions, section 3.0, of SB–2018–07, Revision D. If the emergency float system has been deactivated and placarded as inoperative, you are not required to repeat the inspection specified in the introductory text of paragraph (g) of this AD. Note 1 to paragraph (g)(2) of this AD: This AD does not allow operation with an inoperative emergency float system unless the requirements of 14 CFR 91.213 have been met. (h) Credit for Previous Actions This paragraph provides credit for the actions specified in introductory text of paragraph (g) and paragraph (g)(2) of this AD, if the actions were done before the effective date of this AD using DART Aerospace Service Bulletin SB–2018–07, Revision B, dated October 8, 2019, or DART Aerospace Service Bulletin SB–2018–07, Revision C, dated November 14, 2019. (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) For operations conducted under a 14 CFR part 119 operating certificate or under 14 CFR part 91, subpart K, notify your principal inspector or lacking a principal inspector, the manager of the local flight standards district office or certificate holding district office, before operating any aircraft complying with this AD through an AMOC. (j) Related Information For information about AMOCs, contact Johann S. Magana, Aerospace Engineer, Cabin Safety and Environmental Systems Section, FAA, Los Angeles ACO Branch, 3960 Paramount Boulevard, Lakewood, CA 90712–4137; phone: 562–627–5322; fax: 562– 627–5210; email: johann.magana@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. E:\FR\FM\13FER1.SGM 13FER1 Federal Register / Vol. 85, No. 30 / Thursday, February 13, 2020 / Rules and Regulations (i) DART Aerospace Service Bulletin SB– 2018–07, Revision D, dated November 25, 2019. (ii) [Reserved] (3) For service information identified in this AD, contact Dart Aerospace LTD., 1270 Aberdeen St., Hawkesbury, ON, K6A 1K7, Canada; telephone: 1–613–632–5200; Fax: 1– 613–632–5246; or at www.dartaero.com. (4) You may view this service information at the FAA, Office of the Regional Counsel, Southwest Region, 10101 Hillwood Pkwy., Room 6N–321, Fort Worth, TX 76177. For information on the availability of this material at the FAA, call 817–222–5110. (5) You may view this service information that is incorporated by reference at the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA). For information on the availability of this material at NARA, email fedreg.legal@nara.gov, or go to: https:// www.archives.gov/federal-register/cfr/ibrlocations.html. Issued on February 7, 2020. Lance T. Gant, Director, Compliance & Airworthiness Division, Aircraft Certification Service. [FR Doc. 2020–02841 Filed 2–12–20; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910–13–P DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Part 39 [Docket No. FAA–2020–0116; Product Identifier 2019–CE–060–AD; Amendment 39–21026; AD 2020–02–18] RIN 2120–AA64 Airworthiness Directives; Gulfstream Aerospace Corporation Airplanes Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT. ACTION: Final rule; request for comments. AGENCY: jbell on DSKJLSW7X2PROD with RULES Examining the AD Docket The FAA is adopting a new airworthiness directive (AD) for all Gulfstream Aerospace Corporation (Gulfstream) Models GVI, GVII–G500, and GVII–G600 airplanes. This AD requires revising the airplane flight manual (AFM) by attaching an airplane flight manual supplement (AFMS), which contains new or revised operating limitations, abnormal procedures, and emergency procedures. This AD was prompted by reports of continued flight after a flight control surface shutdown. If flight is continued after a flight control surface shutdown, the airplane is left without protection against flight control surface hard-over and force fight events on the remaining, operable flight control surfaces. The FAA is issuing this AD to address the unsafe condition on these products. SUMMARY: VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:58 Feb 12, 2020 Jkt 250001 This AD is effective February 13, 2020. The Director of the Federal Register approved the incorporation by reference of certain publications listed in this AD as of February 13, 2020. The FAA must receive comments on this AD by March 30, 2020. 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 https://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: U.S. Department of Transportation, Docket Operations, M– 30, West Building Ground Floor, Room W12–140, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE, Washington, DC 20590, between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. For service information identified in this final rule, contact Gulfstream Aerospace Corporation, Technical Publications Dept., P.O. Box 2206, Savannah, GA 31402–2206; telephone: (800) 810–4853; fax: (912) 965–3520; email: pubs@gulfstream.com; internet: https://www.gulfstream.com/customersupport. For information on the availability of this material at the FAA, call (816) 329–4148. It is also available on the internet at https:// www.regulations.gov by searching for and locating Docket No. FAA–2020– 0116. DATES: You may examine the AD docket on the internet at https:// www.regulations.gov by searching for and locating Docket No. FAA–2020– 0116; 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 street address for Docket Operations is listed above. Comments will be available in the AD docket shortly after receipt. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Myles Jalalian, Aerospace Engineer, Atlanta ACO Branch, FAA, 1701 Columbia Avenue, College Park, Georgia 30337; phone: (404) 474–5572; fax: (404) 474–5606; email: myles.jalalian@ faa.gov. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: PO 00000 Frm 00023 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 8153 Discussion The FAA has received at least 30 reports of the flight control computer (FCC) commanding flight control surfaces into damped by-pass mode (surface shutdown). During the investigation of these events, it was discovered that the existing GVI and GVII airplane flight manuals, in most cases, allow continued flight after a surface shutdown, and the GVI airplane flight manual allows takeoff with an inboard spoiler shutdown. The FCC commanding of a surface into damped by-pass mode is the protection provided against flight control hydraulic force fights and flight control surface hard-over events. If the FCC detects a flight control anomaly, it commands the surface into damped bypass mode. The FCC software will not command a second surface on an axis of control into damped by-pass mode. Any flight control surface shutdown results in the loss of FCC-provided protection against future flight control surface hard-over and force-fight events on the remaining, operable flight control surfaces on that axis of control. In addition, certain other system failures will result in the loss of FCC protection against flight control surface hard-overs and force-fights. Loss of flight control surface protection could lead to loss of structural integrity of the airplane and loss of control of the airplane. The FAA is issuing this AD to address the unsafe condition on these products. Related Service Information Under 1 CFR Part 51 The FAA reviewed Gulfstream Aerospace G650 Airplane Flight Manual Supplement No. G650–2019–04, dated December 16, 2019; Gulfstream Aerospace G650ER Airplane Flight Manual Supplement No. G650ER–2019– 04, dated December 16, 2019; Gulfstream Aerospace GVII–G500 Airplane Flight Manual Supplement No. GVII–G500–2019–08, dated December 16, 2019; and Gulfstream Aerospace G600 Airplane Flight Manual Supplement No. GVII–G600–2019–02, dated December 16, 2019. For the applicable airplane designation, each AFMS contains new or revised operating limitations, abnormal procedures, and emergency procedures. These limitations and procedures prohibit flight operations if a flight control or flight control computer failure is detected and require landing as soon as possible if the failure occurs in flight. This service information is reasonably available because the interested parties have access to it E:\FR\FM\13FER1.SGM 13FER1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 85, Number 30 (Thursday, February 13, 2020)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Pages 8150-8153]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2020-02841]


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DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION

Federal Aviation Administration

14 CFR Part 39

[Docket No. FAA-2020-0125; Product Identifier 2019-SW-104-AD; Amendment 
39-21027; AD 2020-02-23]
RIN 2120-AA64


Airworthiness Directives; Airbus Helicopters

AGENCY: Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT.

ACTION: Final rule; request for comments.

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

SUMMARY: The FAA is adopting a new airworthiness directive (AD) for 
certain Airbus Helicopters Model AS350B, AS350BA, AS350B1, AS350B2, 
AS350B3, AS350C, AS350D, A350D1, AS355E, AS355F, AS355F1, AS355F2, 
AS355N, and AS355NP helicopters. This AD requires repetitive 
inspections of the installation of the pull cables on the emergency 
float kits. This AD was prompted by the results of an accident 
investigation and subsequent reports of difficulty pulling the 
emergency float kit float activation handle installed on the pilot 
cyclic. The FAA is issuing this AD to address the unsafe condition on 
these products.

DATES: This AD is effective February 28, 2020.
    The Director of the Federal Register approved the incorporation by 
reference of a certain publication listed in this AD as of February 28, 
2020.
    The FAA must receive comments on this AD by March 30, 2020.

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 https://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 final rule, contact Dart 
Aerospace LTD., 1270 Aberdeen St., Hawkesbury, ON, K6A 1K7, Canada; 
telephone: 1-613-632-5200; Fax: 1-613-632-5246; or at www.dartaero.com.
    You may view this service information at the FAA, Office of the 
Regional Counsel, Southwest Region, 10101 Hillwood Pkwy, Room 6N-321, 
Fort Worth, TX 76177. For information on the availability of this 
material at the FAA, call 817-222-5110.
    It is also available on the internet at https://www.regulations.gov 
by searching for and locating Docket No. FAA-2020-0125.

Examining the AD Docket

    You may examine the AD docket on the internet at https://www.regulations.gov by searching for and locating Docket No. FAA-2020-
0125; 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 street address for Docket Operations is listed 
above. Comments will be available in the AD docket shortly after 
receipt.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Johann S. Magana, Aerospace Engineer, 
Cabin Safety and Environmental Systems Section, FAA, Los Angeles ACO 
Branch, 3960 Paramount Boulevard, Lakewood, CA 90712-4137; phone: 562-
627-5322; fax: 562-627-5210; email: [email protected].

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: 

Discussion

    This AD is prompted by the results of an investigation of a March 
11, 2018, fatal accident in which an Airbus Helicopters Model AS350B2 
helicopter impacted a body of water during an autorotation. The left-
hand and right-hand emergency floats did not inflate symmetrically and 
the helicopter subsequently capsized.
    During the accident investigation, the FAA learned of reports of 
difficulty pulling the emergency float kit float activation handle 
installed on the pilot cyclic. Asymmetric inflation of the float system 
and difficulty deploying the float system from the float activation 
handle installed on the pilot cyclic can be caused by improperly 
installed pull cables. These emergency float kits utilize a system of 
pull cables to activate and release compressed gas from the float 
cylinders into the floats. Proper installation of the pull cables 
allows the two float cylinders installed on the aircraft to activate 
simultaneously, allowing for proper distribution of gas to all floats 
in the system. Improperly installed pull cables, if not addressed, 
could result in loss of the left- or right-hand float, causing the 
helicopter to roll to one side but remain buoyant, or loss of both 
floats, causing the helicopter to capsize underwater.
    These emergency float systems are installed on Airbus Helicopters 
Model AS350B, AS350BA, AS350B1, AS350B2, AS350B3, AS350C, AS350D, and 
AS350D1 helicopters under Supplemental Type Certificate (STC) 
SR00470LA, and on Model AS355E, AS355F, AS355F1, AS355F2, AS355N, and 
AS355NP helicopters under STC SR00645LA. Both STCs are held by Apical 
Industries, Inc., d/b/a DART Aerospace (DART). Following the 
investigation, DART developed a test tool to verify correct 
installation and rigging of the pull cables and subsequently issued 
service information to provide instructions for using the test tool. 
The FAA approved these instructions to correct the unsafe condition on 
November 13, 2019. Accordingly, the FAA is issuing this AD to address 
the unsafe condition on these products.

[[Page 8151]]

Related Service Information Under 1 CFR Part 51

    The FAA has reviewed DART Aerospace Service Bulletin SB-2018-07, 
Revision D, dated November 25, 2019. This service information contains 
procedures for inspecting the installation of the pull cables on 20326-
series part-numbered emergency float kits (e.g., inspecting for 
activation pull forces on the float activation handle), readjusting the 
cable rigging if improperly installed, and contacting DART if 
readjusting the rigging is not successful. This service information 
also contains optional procedures for deactivating the emergency float 
system as inoperative.
    This service information is reasonably available because the 
interested parties have access to it through their normal course of 
business or by the means identified in the ADDRESSES section.

Other Related Service Information

    The FAA has also reviewed DART Aerospace Service Bulletin SB-2018-
07, Revision B, dated October 8, 2019, and DART Aerospace Service 
Bulletin SB-2018-07, Revision C, dated November 14, 2019. The actions 
specified in these service bulletins are the same as those specified in 
DART Aerospace Service Bulletin SB-2018-07, Revision D, dated November 
25, 2019. DART Aerospace Service Bulletin SB-2018-07, Revision C, dated 
November 14, 2019, adds a note that includes a reference to the 
instructions for continued airworthiness for a specific float system 
configuration that was not in DART Aerospace Service Bulletin SB-2018-
07, Revision B, dated October 8, 2019. DART Aerospace Service Bulletin 
SB-2018-07, Revision D, dated November 25, 2019, clarifies certain 
references to the operational instructions manual. These differences do 
not affect how operators would accomplish the actions necessary to 
address the identified unsafe condition.

FAA's Determination

    The FAA is issuing this AD after evaluating all the relevant 
information and determining the unsafe condition described previously 
is likely to exist or develop in other products of the same type 
design.

AD Requirements

    This AD requires repetitive inspections of the installation of the 
pull cables on the emergency float kits and corrective action if 
necessary.

Differences Between This AD and the Service Information

    DART Aerospace Service Bulletin SB-2018-07, Revision D, dated 
November 25, 2019, specifies accomplishing the actions before March 31, 
2020, while this AD requires compliance within 100 hours time-in-
service (TIS) or 30 days after the effective date of this AD, whichever 
occurs first.

FAA's Justification and Determination of the Effective Date

    Section 553(b)(3)(B) of the Administrative Procedure Act (5 U.S.C.) 
authorizes agencies to dispense with notice and comment procedures for 
rules when the agency, for ``good cause'' finds that those procedures 
are ``impracticable, unnecessary, or contrary to the public interest.'' 
Under this section, an agency, upon finding good cause, may issue a 
final rule without seeking comment prior to the rulemaking.
    An unsafe condition exists that requires the immediate adoption of 
this AD without providing an opportunity for public comments prior to 
adoption. The FAA has found that the risk to the flying public 
justifies waiving notice and comment prior to adoption of this rule 
because improperly installed pull cables may lead to asymmetric 
inflation of the float system or difficulty deploying the float system 
from the float activation handle installed on the pilot cyclic, which 
could result in the loss of one or more floats. Loss of the left- or 
right-hand float could cause the helicopter to roll to one side but 
remain buoyant, while loss of both floats could cause the helicopter to 
capsize underwater. Because of the high utilization rate of helicopters 
with these emergency float kits installed, and because these 
helicopters primarily conduct operations over water, the FAA determined 
a compliance time of no more than 100 hours TIS or 30 days, whichever 
occurs first, was required to correct the unsafe condition. This 
compliance time is shorter than the time necessary for the public to 
comment and for publication of the final rule. Therefore, notice and 
opportunity for prior public comment are impracticable and contrary to 
public interest pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 553(b)(3)(B). In addition, for the 
reasons stated above, the FAA finds that good cause exists pursuant to 
5 U.S.C. 553(d) for making this amendment effective in less than 30 
days.

Comments Invited

    This AD is a final rule that involves requirements affecting flight 
safety and was not preceded by notice and an opportunity for public 
comment. However, the FAA invites you to send any written data, views, 
or arguments about this final rule. Send your comments to an address 
listed under the ADDRESSES section. Include the docket number FAA-2020-
0125 and Product Identifier 2019-SW-104-AD at the beginning of your 
comments. The FAA specifically invites comments on the overall 
regulatory, economic, environmental, and energy aspects of this final 
rule. The FAA will consider all comments received by the closing date 
and may amend this final rule because of those comments.
    The FAA will post all comments received, without change, to https://www.regulations.gov, including any personal information you provide. 
The FAA will also post a report summarizing each substantive verbal 
contact received about this final rule.

Regulatory Flexibility Act

    The requirements of the Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA) do not 
apply when an agency finds good cause pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 553 to adopt 
a rule without prior notice and comment. Because FAA has determined 
that it has good cause to adopt this rule without notice and comment, 
RFA analysis is not required.

Costs of Compliance

    The FAA estimates that this AD affects 71 helicopters of U.S. 
registry. The FAA estimates the following costs to comply with this AD:

                                                 Estimated Costs
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                                     Cost per      Cost on U.S.
               Action                         Labor cost            Parts cost      helicopter       operators
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Inspection.........................  3 work-hours x $85 per hour              $0            $255         $18,105
                                      = $255 per inspection.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


[[Page 8152]]

    The inspection requires the use of a pull cable test kit, which 
costs $2,000. Only one pull cable test kit is needed per operator such 
that the operator may use the same pull cable test kit on any affected 
helicopter. The FAA has no way of determining what on-condition actions 
may be required following the inspection required by this AD, the 
number of helicopters that might need on-condition actions, or the 
costs to perform the on-condition actions.
    According to the manufacturer, some or all of the costs of this AD 
may be covered under warranty, thereby reducing the cost impact on 
affected individuals. The FAA does not control warranty coverage for 
affected individuals. As a result, the FAA has included all known costs 
in the cost estimate.

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.
    The FAA is 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.

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, and
    (2) Will not affect intrastate aviation in Alaska.

List of Subjects in 14 CFR Part 39

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

Adoption of the Amendment

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

PART 39--AIRWORTHINESS DIRECTIVES

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

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


Sec.  39.13   [Amended]

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

2020-02-23 Airbus Helicopters: Amendment 39-21027; Docket No. FAA-
2020-0125; Product Identifier 2019-SW-104-AD.

(a) Effective Date

    This AD is effective February 28, 2020.

(b) Affected ADs

    None.

(c) Applicability

    This AD applies to the helicopters identified in paragraphs 
(c)(1) and (2) of this AD, certificated in any category.
    (1) Airbus Helicopters Model AS350B, AS350BA, AS350B1, AS350B2, 
AS350B3, AS350C, AS350D, and AS350D1 helicopters, modified by 
supplemental type certificate (STC) SR00470LA.
    (2) Airbus Helicopters Model AS355E, AS355F, AS355F1, AS355F2, 
AS355N, and AS355NP helicopters, modified by STC SR00645LA.

(d) Subject

    Air Transport Association (ATA) of America Code 25, Equipment/
Furnishings, and 32, Landing gear.

(e) Unsafe Condition

    This AD was prompted by reports of difficulty pulling the 
emergency float kit float activation handle installed on the pilot 
cyclic. The FAA is issuing this AD to address improperly installed 
pull cables, which can lead to difficulty deploying the float system 
from the float activation handle installed on the pilot cyclic, and 
could result in loss of the left- or right-hand float, causing the 
helicopter to roll to one side but remain buoyant, or loss of both 
floats causing the helicopter to capsize underwater.

(f) Compliance

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

(g) Required Actions

    Within 100 hours time-in-service (TIS) or 30 days, whichever 
occurs first after the effective date of this AD, and thereafter at 
intervals not to exceed six months, inspect the installation of the 
pull cables on the emergency float kit and readjust the cable 
rigging if improperly installed, in accordance with the 
Accomplishment Instructions, sections 1.0 through 1.4, of DART 
Aerospace Service Bulletin No. SB-2018-07, Revision D, dated 
November 25, 2019 (``SB-2018-07, Revision D''), except if the pull 
cable installation does not pass the test in section 1.3 after re-
adjusting the cable rigging, you must comply with either paragraph 
(g)(1) or (2) of this AD before further flight:
    (1) Repair the pull cable installation.
    (2) Deactivate and placard the emergency float system as 
inoperative in accordance with the Accomplishment Instructions, 
section 3.0, of SB-2018-07, Revision D. If the emergency float 
system has been deactivated and placarded as inoperative, you are 
not required to repeat the inspection specified in the introductory 
text of paragraph (g) of this AD.

    Note 1 to paragraph (g)(2) of this AD:  This AD does not allow 
operation with an inoperative emergency float system unless the 
requirements of 14 CFR 91.213 have been met.

(h) Credit for Previous Actions

    This paragraph provides credit for the actions specified in 
introductory text of paragraph (g) and paragraph (g)(2) of this AD, 
if the actions were done before the effective date of this AD using 
DART Aerospace Service Bulletin SB-2018-07, Revision B, dated 
October 8, 2019, or DART Aerospace Service Bulletin SB-2018-07, 
Revision C, dated November 14, 2019.

(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) For operations conducted under a 14 CFR part 119 operating 
certificate or under 14 CFR part 91, subpart K, notify your 
principal inspector or lacking a principal inspector, the manager of 
the local flight standards district office or certificate holding 
district office, before operating any aircraft complying with this 
AD through an AMOC.

(j) Related Information

    For information about AMOCs, contact Johann S. Magana, Aerospace 
Engineer, Cabin Safety and Environmental Systems Section, FAA, Los 
Angeles ACO Branch, 3960 Paramount Boulevard, Lakewood, CA 90712-
4137; phone: 562-627-5322; 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.

[[Page 8153]]

    (i) DART Aerospace Service Bulletin SB-2018-07, Revision D, 
dated November 25, 2019.
    (ii) [Reserved]
    (3) For service information identified in this AD, contact Dart 
Aerospace LTD., 1270 Aberdeen St., Hawkesbury, ON, K6A 1K7, Canada; 
telephone: 1-613-632-5200; Fax: 1-613-632-5246; or at 
www.dartaero.com.
    (4) You may view this service information at the FAA, Office of 
the Regional Counsel, Southwest Region, 10101 Hillwood Pkwy., Room 
6N-321, Fort Worth, TX 76177. For information on the availability of 
this material at the FAA, call 817-222-5110.
    (5) You may view this service information that is incorporated 
by reference at the National Archives and Records Administration 
(NARA). For information on the availability of this material at 
NARA, email [email protected], or go to: https://www.archives.gov/federal-register/cfr/ibr-locations.html.

    Issued on February 7, 2020.
Lance T. Gant,
Director, Compliance & Airworthiness Division, Aircraft Certification 
Service.
[FR Doc. 2020-02841 Filed 2-12-20; 8:45 am]
 BILLING CODE 4910-13-P