Airworthiness Directives; Airbus Helicopters Deutschland GmbH Helicopters, 20089-20091 [2021-07623]

Download as PDF Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 72 / Friday, April 16, 2021 / Proposed Rules jbell on DSKJLSW7X2PROD with PROPOSALS (k) Other FAA AD Provisions The following provisions also apply to this AD: (1) Alternative Methods of Compliance (AMOCs): The Manager, Large Aircraft Section, International Validation 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 Large Aircraft Section, International Validation Branch, send it to the attention of the person identified in paragraph (l)(2) of this AD. Information may be emailed to: 9-AVS-AIR730-AMOC@faa.gov. 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. (2) Contacting the Manufacturer: For any requirement in this AD to obtain instructions from a manufacturer, the instructions must be accomplished using a method approved by the Manager, Large Aircraft Section, International Validation Branch, FAA; or EASA; or Airbus SAS’s EASA Design Organization Approval (DOA). If approved by the DOA, the approval must include the DOA-authorized signature. (3) Required for Compliance (RC): Except as required by paragraph (k)(2) of this AD, if any service information contains procedures or tests that are identified as RC, those procedures and tests must be done to comply with this AD; any procedures or tests that are not identified as RC are recommended. Those procedures and tests that are not identified 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 procedures and tests identified as RC can be done and the airplane can be put back in an airworthy condition. Any substitutions or changes to procedures or tests identified as RC require approval of an AMOC. (l) Related Information (1) For information about EASA AD 2020– 0211 and EASA AD 2021–0026, contact EASA, Konrad-Adenauer-Ufer 3, 50668 Cologne, Germany; telephone +49 221 8999 000; email ADs@easa.europa.eu; Internet www.easa.europa.eu. You may find these EASA ADs on the EASA website at https:// ad.easa.europa.eu. You may view this material at the FAA, Airworthiness Products Section, Operational Safety 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–2021–0303. (2) For more information about this AD, contact Kathleen Arrigotti, Aerospace Engineer, Large Aircraft Section, International Validation Branch, FAA, 2200 South 216th St., Des Moines, WA 98198; telephone and fax 206–231–3218; email kathleen.arrigotti@faa.gov. VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:09 Apr 15, 2021 Jkt 253001 Issued on April 8, 2021. Lance T. Gant, Director, Compliance & Airworthiness Division, Aircraft Certification Service. [FR Doc. 2021–07625 Filed 4–15–21; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910–13–P DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Part 39 [Docket No. FAA–2019–0293; Product Identifier 2017–SW–052–AD] RIN 2120–AA64 Airworthiness Directives; Airbus Helicopters Deutschland GmbH Helicopters Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT. ACTION: Notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM). AGENCY: The FAA proposes to adopt a new airworthiness directive (AD) for Airbus Helicopters Deutschland GmbH (Airbus Helicopters) Model EC135P1, EC135P2, EC135P2+, EC135P3, EC135T1, EC135T2, EC135T2+, and EC135T3 helicopters. This proposed AD would require modification of the tail rotor (T/R) control installation, a functional test, and corrective actions as necessary. This proposed AD is prompted by cases of insufficient clearance between a certain T/R control bearing connection and the helicopter structure, which were detected on the production line. The FAA is proposing this AD to address an unsafe condition on these products. DATES: The FAA must receive comments on this proposed AD by June 1, 2021. ADDRESSES: You may send comments by any of the following methods: • Federal eRulemaking Docket: Go to https://www.regulations.gov. Follow the online instructions for sending your comments electronically. • Fax: 202–493–2251. • Mail: Send comments to the U.S. Department of Transportation, Docket Operations, M–30, West Building Ground Floor, Room W12–140, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE, Washington, DC 20590–0001. • Hand Delivery: Deliver to the ‘‘Mail’’ address between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. For service information identified in this NPRM, contact Airbus Helicopters, 2701 N Forum Drive, Grand Prairie, TX 75052; telephone 972–641–0000 or 800– 232–0323; fax 972–641–3775; or at SUMMARY: PO 00000 Frm 00053 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 20089 https://www.airbus.com/helicopters/ services/technical-support.html. You may view the referenced service information at the FAA, Office of the Regional Counsel, Southwest Region, 10101 Hillwood Pkwy., Room 6N–321, Fort Worth, TX 76177. 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–2019– 0293; or in person at Docket Operations between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. The AD docket contains this NPRM, the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) AD, any comments received, and other information. The street address for Docket Operations is listed above. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: David Hatfield, Aviation Safety Engineer, Aircraft Systems Section, Technical Innovation Policy Branch, FAA, 10101 Hillwood Pkwy., Fort Worth, TX 76177; telephone 817–222– 5110; email david.hatfield@faa.gov. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Comments Invited The FAA invites you to send any written relevant data, views, or arguments about this proposal. Send your comments to an address listed under ADDRESSES. Include ‘‘Docket No. FAA–2019–0293; Product Identifier 2017–SW–052–AD’’ at the beginning of your comments. The most helpful comments reference a specific portion of the proposal, explain the reason for any recommended change, and include supporting data. The FAA will consider all comments received by the closing date and may amend this proposal because of those comments. Except for Confidential Business Information (CBI) as described in the following paragraph, and other information as described in 14 CFR 11.35, the FAA will post all comments received, without change, to https:// www.regulations.gov, including any personal information you provide. The agency will also post a report summarizing each substantive verbal contact received about this NPRM. Confidential Business Information CBI is commercial or financial information that is both customarily and actually treated as private by its owner. Under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) (5 U.S.C. 552), CBI is exempt from public disclosure. If your comments responsive to this NPRM contain commercial or financial information that is customarily treated E:\FR\FM\16APP1.SGM 16APP1 20090 Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 72 / Friday, April 16, 2021 / Proposed Rules as private, that you actually treat as private, and that is relevant or responsive to this NPRM, it is important that you clearly designate the submitted comments as CBI. Please mark each page of your submission containing CBI as ‘‘PROPIN.’’ The FAA will treat such marked submissions as confidential under the FOIA, and they will not be placed in the public docket of this NPRM. Submissions containing CBI should be sent to David Hatfield, Aviation Safety Engineer, Aircraft Systems Section, Technical Innovation Policy Branch, FAA, 10101 Hill wood Pkwy., Fort Worth, TX 76177; telephone 817–222–5110; email david.hatfield@ faa.gov. Any commentary that the FAA receives which is not specifically designated as CBI will be placed in the public docket for this rulemaking. jbell on DSKJLSW7X2PROD with PROPOSALS Background EASA, which is the Technical Agent for the Member States of the European Union, has issued EASA AD 2017–0147, dated August 10, 2017 (EASA AD 2017– 0147), to correct an unsafe condition for Airbus Helicopters Model EC135P1, EC135P2, EC135P2+, EC135P3, EC135T1, EC135T2, EC135T2+, EC135T3, EC635P2+, EC635P3, EC635T1, EC635T2+, and EC635T3 helicopters. EASA advises that several cases of insufficient clearance between a certain T/R bearing connection and the helicopter structure were detected during inspections of helicopters on the production line. EASA states that this condition, if not corrected and in the case of an unglued bearing, could lead to blockage of the pedal controlling the T/R thrust and loss of the T/R control. EASA further advises that this could result in a forced landing with damage to the helicopter and injury to the occupants. Accordingly, EASA AD 2017–0147 requires modifying the T/R control installation by adding a Teflon washer, which reduces the degree of freedom in case of a drifting bearing at the affected connection. EASA AD 2017–0147 also requires a functional test for clearance, and depending on the results, either accomplishing additional corrective actions or contacting Airbus Helicopters for instructions. FAA’s Determination These helicopters have been approved by EASA and are approved for operation in the United States. Pursuant to the FAA’s bilateral agreement with the European Union, EASA has notified the FAA about the unsafe condition described in its AD. The FAA is issuing this NPRM after determining that an unsafe condition described previously is VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:09 Apr 15, 2021 Jkt 253001 likely to exist or develop on other helicopters of the same type designs. are required to have a maintenance program. Related Service Information Under 1 CFR Part 51 Costs of Compliance The FAA reviewed Airbus Helicopters Alert Service Bulletin EC135–67A–031, Revision 0, dated March 30, 2017 (ASB EC135–67A–031), for Airbus Helicopters Model EC135P1, EC135P2, EC135P2+, EC135P3, EC135T1, EC135T2, EC135T2+, EC135T3, EC635P2+, EC635P3, EC635T1, EC635T2+, and EC635T3 helicopters. For serial numbers (S/N) up to 1254 inclusive, except S/N 1235, this service information specifies retrofitting a Teflon washer on the T/R controls, performing a functional test of the modified T/R control installation to inspect for clearance, and making any necessary adjustments. This service information advises that S/N 1255 and up will have the Teflon washer installed in production. 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. Proposed AD Requirements in This NPRM This proposed AD would apply to Model EC135P1, EC135P2, EC135P2+, EC135P3, EC135T1, EC125T2+, and EC135T3 helicopters with a S/N up to 1254 inclusive (except for S/N 1235) and would require modifying the T/R control within 360 hours time-in-service (TIS) by installing a Teflon washer and performing a functional test in accordance with specified portions of ASB EC135–67A–031. Based on the results of the functional test, this proposed AD would require making repairs in accordance with FAAapproved procedures. Differences Between This Proposed AD and the EASA AD The EASA AD sets compliance times at 12 months, while this proposed AD would require compliance within 360 hours TIS. The EASA AD applies to Airbus Helicopters Model 635 T1, 635 T2+, 635 T3, 635 P2+, 635 P3 helicopters, and this proposed AD would not because those models do not have an FAA type certificate. The EASA AD requires contacting Airbus Helicopters for approved repair procedures, while this proposed AD would require a repair using FAAapproved procedures. The EASA AD requires revising the ‘‘aircraft maintenance program,’’ whereas this AD does not because not all U.S. operators PO 00000 Frm 00054 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 The FAA estimates that this AD, if adopted as proposed, would affect 331 helicopters of U.S. registry. Labor rates are estimated at $85 per work-hour. Based on these numbers, the FAA estimates the following costs to comply with this proposed AD. Modifying the T/R control installation and conducting a functional test would take about 3 work-hours and parts would cost about $25 for an estimated cost of $280 per helicopter and $92,680 for the U.S. fleet. If required, adjusting the clearance would take about 1 work-hour for an estimated cost of $85 per helicopter. Authority for This Rulemaking Title 49 of the United States Code specifies the FAA’s authority to issue rules on aviation safety. Subtitle I, section 106, describes the authority of the FAA Administrator. Subtitle VII: Aviation Programs, describes in more detail the scope of the Agency’s authority. 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 The FAA determined that this proposed AD would not have federalism implications under Executive Order 13132. This proposed AD would not have a substantial direct effect on the States, on the relationship between the national Government and the States, or on the distribution of power and responsibilities among the various levels of government. For the reasons discussed, I certify this proposed regulation: 1. Is not a ‘‘significant regulatory action’’ under Executive Order 12866, 2. Will not affect intrastate aviation in Alaska, and 3. 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. E:\FR\FM\16APP1.SGM 16APP1 Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 72 / Friday, April 16, 2021 / Proposed Rules List of Subjects in 14 CFR Part 39 Air transportation, Aircraft, Aviation safety, Incorporation by reference, Safety. The Proposed Amendment Accordingly, under the authority delegated to me by the Administrator, the FAA proposes to amend 14 CFR part 39 as follows: PART 39—AIRWORTHINESS DIRECTIVES 1. The authority citation for part 39 continues to read as follows: ■ Authority: 49 U.S.C. 106(g), 40113, 44701. § 39.13 [Amended] 2. The FAA amends § 39.13 by adding the following new airworthiness directive: ■ Airbus Helicopters Deutschland GmbH: Docket No. FAA–2019–0293; Product Identifier 2017–SW–052–AD. (a) Comments Due Date The FAA must receive comments on this airworthiness directive (AD) by June 1, 2021. (b) Affected ADs None. (c) Applicability This AD applies to Airbus Helicopters Deutschland GmbH Model EC135P1, EC135P2, EC135P2+, EC135P3, EC135T1, EC135T2, EC135T2+, and EC135T3 helicopters with serial number (S/N) up to and including 1254 (except S/N 1235), certificated in any category. (d) Subject Joint Aircraft Service Component (JASC) Code: 6720, Tail Rotor Control System. (e) Unsafe Condition This AD defines the unsafe condition as interference between the tail rotor (T/R) control bearing connection close-tolerance bolt and the helicopter structure, which could lead to blockage of the pedal controlling the T/R thrust. This condition could result in loss of T/R control, prompting a forced landing. jbell on DSKJLSW7X2PROD with PROPOSALS (f) Compliance Comply with this AD within the compliance times specified, unless already done. (g) Required Actions Within 360 hours time-in-service, modify the T/R control by installing a Teflon washer and perform a functional test of the modification in accordance with the Accomplishment Instructions, paragraphs 3.B.2 through 3.B.4.2., of Airbus Helicopters Alert Service Bulletin ASB EC135–67A–031, Revision 0, dated March 30, 2017. If, during the functional test, the clearance between the end of the close-tolerance bolt, castellated nut, and the lower stringer is less than 1.0 mm, repair in accordance with FAAapproved procedures. VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:09 Apr 15, 2021 Jkt 253001 (h) Alternative Methods of Compliance (AMOCs) (1) The Manager, International Validation Branch, 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. Information may be emailed to: 9-AVS-AIR-730-AMOC@ 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. (i) Related Information (1) For more information about this AD, contact David Hatfield, Aviation Safety Engineer, Aircraft Systems Section, Technical Innovation Policy Branch, FAA, 10101 Hillwood Pkwy., Fort Worth, TX 76177; telephone 817–222–5110; email david.hatfield@faa.gov. (2) For service information identified in this AD, contact Airbus Helicopters, 2701 N Forum Drive, Grand Prairie, TX 75052; telephone 972–641–0000 or 800–232–0323; fax 972–641–3775; or at https:// www.airbus.com/helicopters/services/ technical-support.html. You may view the referenced service information at the FAA, Office of the Regional Counsel, Southwest Region, 10101 Hillwood Pkwy., Room 6N–321, Fort Worth, TX 76177. (3) The subject of this AD is addressed in European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) AD 2017–0147, dated August 10, 2017. You may view the EASA AD on the internet at https:// www.regulations.gov in the AD Docket. Issued on April 8, 2021. Lance T. Gant, Director, Compliance & Airworthiness Division, Aircraft Certification Service. [FR Doc. 2021–07623 Filed 4–15–21; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910–13–P DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Part 39 [Docket No. FAA–2021–0298; Project Identifier MCAI–2020–01549–T] RIN 2120–AA64 Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT. ACTION: Notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM). AGENCY: The FAA proposes to adopt a new airworthiness directive (AD) for certain Airbus Canada Limited SUMMARY: Frm 00055 Fmt 4702 Partnership Model BD–500–1A10 airplanes. This proposed AD was prompted by a report that an incorrect low-pressure distribution supply duct may be installed in the forward cargo compartment. This proposed AD would require an inspection of the lowpressure distribution supply duct to determine the part number, and replacement if necessary, as specified in a Transport Canada Civil Aviation (TCCA) AD, which is proposed for incorporation by reference. The FAA is proposing this AD to address the unsafe condition on these products. DATES: The FAA must receive comments on this proposed AD by June 1, 2021. 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 material that will be incorporated by reference (IBR) in this AD, contact TCCA, Transport Canada National Aircraft Certification, 159 Cleopatra Drive, Nepean, Ontario, K1A 0N5 Canada; telephone 888–663–3639; email AD-CN@tc.gc.ca; internet https:// tc.canada.ca/en/aviation. You may view this IBR material at the FAA, Airworthiness Products Section, Operational Safety Branch, 2200 South 216th St., Des Moines, WA. For information on the availability of this material at the FAA, call 206–231–3195. It is also available in the AD docket on the internet at https:// www.regulations.gov by searching for and locating Docket No. FAA–2021– 0298. Examining the AD Docket Airworthiness Directives; Airbus Canada Limited Partnership (Type Certificate Previously Held by C Series Aircraft Limited Partnership (CSALP); Bombardier, Inc.) Airplanes PO 00000 20091 Sfmt 4702 You may examine the AD docket on the internet at https:// www.regulations.gov by searching for and locating Docket No. FAA–2021– 0298; or in person at Docket Operations between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. The AD docket contains this NPRM, any comments received, and other information. The street address for Docket Operations is listed above. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Siddeeq Bacchus, Aerospace Engineer, E:\FR\FM\16APP1.SGM 16APP1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 86, Number 72 (Friday, April 16, 2021)]
[Proposed Rules]
[Pages 20089-20091]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2021-07623]


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DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION

Federal Aviation Administration

14 CFR Part 39

[Docket No. FAA-2019-0293; Product Identifier 2017-SW-052-AD]
RIN 2120-AA64


Airworthiness Directives; Airbus Helicopters Deutschland GmbH 
Helicopters

AGENCY: Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT.

ACTION: Notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM).

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

SUMMARY: The FAA proposes to adopt a new airworthiness directive (AD) 
for Airbus Helicopters Deutschland GmbH (Airbus Helicopters) Model 
EC135P1, EC135P2, EC135P2+, EC135P3, EC135T1, EC135T2, EC135T2+, and 
EC135T3 helicopters. This proposed AD would require modification of the 
tail rotor (T/R) control installation, a functional test, and 
corrective actions as necessary. This proposed AD is prompted by cases 
of insufficient clearance between a certain T/R control bearing 
connection and the helicopter structure, which were detected on the 
production line. The FAA is proposing this AD to address an unsafe 
condition on these products.

DATES: The FAA must receive comments on this proposed AD by June 1, 
2021.

ADDRESSES: You may send comments by any of the following methods:
     Federal eRulemaking Docket: Go to https://www.regulations.gov. Follow the online instructions for sending your 
comments electronically.
     Fax: 202-493-2251.
     Mail: Send comments to the U.S. Department of 
Transportation, Docket Operations, M-30, West Building Ground Floor, 
Room W12-140, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE, Washington, DC 20590-0001.
     Hand Delivery: Deliver to the ``Mail'' address between 9 
a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays.
    For service information identified in this NPRM, contact Airbus 
Helicopters, 2701 N Forum Drive, Grand Prairie, TX 75052; telephone 
972-641-0000 or 800-232-0323; fax 972-641-3775; or at https://www.airbus.com/helicopters/services/technical-support.html. You may 
view the referenced service information at the FAA, Office of the 
Regional Counsel, Southwest Region, 10101 Hillwood Pkwy., Room 6N-321, 
Fort Worth, TX 76177.

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-2019-
0293; or in person at Docket Operations between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., 
Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. The AD docket contains 
this NPRM, the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) AD, any comments 
received, and other information. The street address for Docket 
Operations is listed above.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: David Hatfield, Aviation Safety 
Engineer, Aircraft Systems Section, Technical Innovation Policy Branch, 
FAA, 10101 Hillwood Pkwy., Fort Worth, TX 76177; telephone 817-222-
5110; email [email protected].

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Comments Invited

    The FAA invites you to send any written relevant data, views, or 
arguments about this proposal. Send your comments to an address listed 
under ADDRESSES. Include ``Docket No. FAA-2019-0293; Product Identifier 
2017-SW-052-AD'' at the beginning of your comments. The most helpful 
comments reference a specific portion of the proposal, explain the 
reason for any recommended change, and include supporting data. The FAA 
will consider all comments received by the closing date and may amend 
this proposal because of those comments.
    Except for Confidential Business Information (CBI) as described in 
the following paragraph, and other information as described in 14 CFR 
11.35, the FAA will post all comments received, without change, to 
https://www.regulations.gov, including any personal information you 
provide. The agency will also post a report summarizing each 
substantive verbal contact received about this NPRM.

Confidential Business Information

    CBI is commercial or financial information that is both customarily 
and actually treated as private by its owner. Under the Freedom of 
Information Act (FOIA) (5 U.S.C. 552), CBI is exempt from public 
disclosure. If your comments responsive to this NPRM contain commercial 
or financial information that is customarily treated

[[Page 20090]]

as private, that you actually treat as private, and that is relevant or 
responsive to this NPRM, it is important that you clearly designate the 
submitted comments as CBI. Please mark each page of your submission 
containing CBI as ``PROPIN.'' The FAA will treat such marked 
submissions as confidential under the FOIA, and they will not be placed 
in the public docket of this NPRM. Submissions containing CBI should be 
sent to David Hatfield, Aviation Safety Engineer, Aircraft Systems 
Section, Technical Innovation Policy Branch, FAA, 10101 Hill wood 
Pkwy., Fort Worth, TX 76177; telephone 817-222-5110; email 
[email protected]. Any commentary that the FAA receives which is 
not specifically designated as CBI will be placed in the public docket 
for this rulemaking.

Background

    EASA, which is the Technical Agent for the Member States of the 
European Union, has issued EASA AD 2017-0147, dated August 10, 2017 
(EASA AD 2017-0147), to correct an unsafe condition for Airbus 
Helicopters Model EC135P1, EC135P2, EC135P2+, EC135P3, EC135T1, 
EC135T2, EC135T2+, EC135T3, EC635P2+, EC635P3, EC635T1, EC635T2+, and 
EC635T3 helicopters. EASA advises that several cases of insufficient 
clearance between a certain T/R bearing connection and the helicopter 
structure were detected during inspections of helicopters on the 
production line. EASA states that this condition, if not corrected and 
in the case of an unglued bearing, could lead to blockage of the pedal 
controlling the T/R thrust and loss of the T/R control. EASA further 
advises that this could result in a forced landing with damage to the 
helicopter and injury to the occupants.
    Accordingly, EASA AD 2017-0147 requires modifying the T/R control 
installation by adding a Teflon washer, which reduces the degree of 
freedom in case of a drifting bearing at the affected connection. EASA 
AD 2017-0147 also requires a functional test for clearance, and 
depending on the results, either accomplishing additional corrective 
actions or contacting Airbus Helicopters for instructions.

FAA's Determination

    These helicopters have been approved by EASA and are approved for 
operation in the United States. Pursuant to the FAA's bilateral 
agreement with the European Union, EASA has notified the FAA about the 
unsafe condition described in its AD. The FAA is issuing this NPRM 
after determining that an unsafe condition described previously is 
likely to exist or develop on other helicopters of the same type 
designs.

Related Service Information Under 1 CFR Part 51

    The FAA reviewed Airbus Helicopters Alert Service Bulletin EC135-
67A-031, Revision 0, dated March 30, 2017 (ASB EC135-67A-031), for 
Airbus Helicopters Model EC135P1, EC135P2, EC135P2+, EC135P3, EC135T1, 
EC135T2, EC135T2+, EC135T3, EC635P2+, EC635P3, EC635T1, EC635T2+, and 
EC635T3 helicopters. For serial numbers (S/N) up to 1254 inclusive, 
except S/N 1235, this service information specifies retrofitting a 
Teflon washer on the T/R controls, performing a functional test of the 
modified T/R control installation to inspect for clearance, and making 
any necessary adjustments. This service information advises that S/N 
1255 and up will have the Teflon washer installed in production.
    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.

Proposed AD Requirements in This NPRM

    This proposed AD would apply to Model EC135P1, EC135P2, EC135P2+, 
EC135P3, EC135T1, EC125T2+, and EC135T3 helicopters with a S/N up to 
1254 inclusive (except for S/N 1235) and would require modifying the T/
R control within 360 hours time-in-service (TIS) by installing a Teflon 
washer and performing a functional test in accordance with specified 
portions of ASB EC135-67A-031. Based on the results of the functional 
test, this proposed AD would require making repairs in accordance with 
FAA-approved procedures.

Differences Between This Proposed AD and the EASA AD

    The EASA AD sets compliance times at 12 months, while this proposed 
AD would require compliance within 360 hours TIS. The EASA AD applies 
to Airbus Helicopters Model 635 T1, 635 T2+, 635 T3, 635 P2+, 635 P3 
helicopters, and this proposed AD would not because those models do not 
have an FAA type certificate. The EASA AD requires contacting Airbus 
Helicopters for approved repair procedures, while this proposed AD 
would require a repair using FAA-approved procedures. The EASA AD 
requires revising the ``aircraft maintenance program,'' whereas this AD 
does not because not all U.S. operators are required to have a 
maintenance program.

Costs of Compliance

    The FAA estimates that this AD, if adopted as proposed, would 
affect 331 helicopters of U.S. registry. Labor rates are estimated at 
$85 per work-hour. Based on these numbers, the FAA estimates the 
following costs to comply with this proposed AD.
    Modifying the T/R control installation and conducting a functional 
test would take about 3 work-hours and parts would cost about $25 for 
an estimated cost of $280 per helicopter and $92,680 for the U.S. 
fleet.
    If required, adjusting the clearance would take about 1 work-hour 
for an estimated cost of $85 per helicopter.

Authority for This Rulemaking

    Title 49 of the United States Code specifies the FAA's authority to 
issue rules on aviation safety. Subtitle I, section 106, describes the 
authority of the FAA Administrator. Subtitle VII: Aviation Programs, 
describes in more detail the scope of the Agency's authority.
    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

    The FAA determined that this proposed AD would not have federalism 
implications under Executive Order 13132. This proposed AD would not 
have a substantial direct effect on the States, on the relationship 
between the national Government and the States, or on the distribution 
of power and responsibilities among the various levels of government.
    For the reasons discussed, I certify this proposed regulation:
    1. Is not a ``significant regulatory action'' under Executive Order 
12866,
    2. Will not affect intrastate aviation in Alaska, and
    3. 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.

[[Page 20091]]

List of Subjects in 14 CFR Part 39

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

The Proposed Amendment

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

PART 39--AIRWORTHINESS DIRECTIVES

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

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


Sec.  39.13   [Amended]

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

Airbus Helicopters Deutschland GmbH: Docket No. FAA-2019-0293; 
Product Identifier 2017-SW-052-AD.

(a) Comments Due Date

    The FAA must receive comments on this airworthiness directive 
(AD) by June 1, 2021.

(b) Affected ADs

    None.

(c) Applicability

    This AD applies to Airbus Helicopters Deutschland GmbH Model 
EC135P1, EC135P2, EC135P2+, EC135P3, EC135T1, EC135T2, EC135T2+, and 
EC135T3 helicopters with serial number (S/N) up to and including 
1254 (except S/N 1235), certificated in any category.

(d) Subject

    Joint Aircraft Service Component (JASC) Code: 6720, Tail Rotor 
Control System.

(e) Unsafe Condition

    This AD defines the unsafe condition as interference between the 
tail rotor (T/R) control bearing connection close-tolerance bolt and 
the helicopter structure, which could lead to blockage of the pedal 
controlling the T/R thrust. This condition could result in loss of 
T/R control, prompting a forced landing.

(f) Compliance

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

(g) Required Actions

    Within 360 hours time-in-service, modify the T/R control by 
installing a Teflon washer and perform a functional test of the 
modification in accordance with the Accomplishment Instructions, 
paragraphs 3.B.2 through 3.B.4.2., of Airbus Helicopters Alert 
Service Bulletin ASB EC135-67A-031, Revision 0, dated March 30, 
2017. If, during the functional test, the clearance between the end 
of the close[hyphen]tolerance bolt, castellated nut, and the lower 
stringer is less than 1.0 mm, repair in accordance with FAA-approved 
procedures.

(h) Alternative Methods of Compliance (AMOCs)

    (1) The Manager, International Validation Branch, 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. 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.

(i) Related Information

    (1) For more information about this AD, contact David Hatfield, 
Aviation Safety Engineer, Aircraft Systems Section, Technical 
Innovation Policy Branch, FAA, 10101 Hillwood Pkwy., Fort Worth, TX 
76177; telephone 817-222-5110; email [email protected].
    (2) For service information identified in this AD, contact 
Airbus Helicopters, 2701 N Forum Drive, Grand Prairie, TX 75052; 
telephone 972-641-0000 or 800-232-0323; fax 972-641-3775; or at 
https://www.airbus.com/helicopters/services/technical-support.html. 
You may view the referenced service information at the FAA, Office 
of the Regional Counsel, Southwest Region, 10101 Hillwood Pkwy., 
Room 6N-321, Fort Worth, TX 76177.
    (3) The subject of this AD is addressed in European Aviation 
Safety Agency (EASA) AD 2017-0147, dated August 10, 2017. You may 
view the EASA AD on the internet at https://www.regulations.gov in 
the AD Docket.

    Issued on April 8, 2021.
Lance T. Gant,
Director, Compliance & Airworthiness Division, Aircraft Certification 
Service.
[FR Doc. 2021-07623 Filed 4-15-21; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4910-13-P