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Rule

Airworthiness Directives; DG Flugzeugbau GmbH Sailplanes

Action

Final Rule.

Summary

We are adopting a new airworthiness directive (AD) for DG Flugzeugbau GmbH Models DG-500 Elan Orion, DG-500 Elan Trainer, DG-500/20 Elan, andDG-500/22 Elan sailplanes and Models DG-500M and DG-500MB powered sailplanes. This AD results from mandatory continuing airworthiness information (MCAI) issued by an aviation authority of another country to identify and correct an unsafe condition on an aviation product. The MCAI describes the unsafe condition as incorrect re-installation of the rear cockpit securing rope for the headrest of the rear seat during maintenance, which could cause the rear seat to interfere with the control stick of the sailplane. We are issuing this AD to require actions to address the unsafe condition on these products.

Unified Agenda

Airworthiness Directives

1 action from November 2013

  • November 2013
    • Actions Will Continue Through
 

Table of Contents Back to Top

DATES: Back to Top

This AD is effective May 15, 2012.

The Director of the Federal Register approved the incorporation by reference of certain publications listed in the AD as of May 15, 2012.

ADDRESSES: Back to Top

You may examine the AD docket on the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov or in person at Document Management Facility, 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 service information identified in this AD, contact DG Flugzeugbau GmbH, Otto-Lilienthal-Weg 2, 76646 Bruchsal, Federal Republic of Germany; telephone: +49 (0) 7251 3020140; fax: +49 (0) 7251 3020149; Internet: http://www.dg-flugzeugbau.de/tech-mitteilungen-e.html; email: dirks@dg-flugzeugbau.de. You may review copies of the referenced service information at the FAA, Small Airplane Directorate, 901 Locust, Kansas City, Missouri 64106. For information on the availability of this material at the FAA, call (816) 329-4148.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Back to Top

Jim Rutherford, Aerospace Engineer, FAA, Small Airplane Directorate, 901 Locust, Room 301, Kansas City, Missouri 64106; telephone: (816) 329-4165; fax: (816) 329-4090; email: jim.rutherford@faa.gov.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Back to Top

Discussion Back to Top

We issued a supplemental notice of proposed rulemaking (SNPRM) to amend 14 CFR part 39 to include an AD that would apply to the specified products. That SNPRM was published in the Federal Register on January 17, 2012 (77 FR 2236). That SNPRM proposed to correct an unsafe condition for the specified products. The MCAI states:

Several occurrences have been reported of incorrect re-installation of rear cockpit securing rope for the headrest of the rear seat during maintenance. In one of these occurrences, the aeroplane suffered an accident. The technical investigations following this accident have revealed that the rear cockpit headrest securing rope was too long, which caused the rear seat to interfere with the control stick of the aeroplane.

This condition if not detected and corrected, could lead to loss of control of the aeroplane.

To address this unsafe condition, DG Flugzeugbau have developed a modification to be accomplished in accordance with the Working Instruction No. 1 for Technical Note (TN) 348/20 in issue 3, dated 13 September 2011, for the English language version and in issue 2, dated 22 October 2008, for the German language version (English version revised at issue 3 to correct a translation discrepancy), which aims to prevent wrong re-installation of the headrest securing rope. TN 500/05 embodies this Working Instruction.

For the reasons described above, this AD requires a one-time inspection of the length of the rear cockpit headrest securing rope and, in case of discrepancy, readjustment of the length. In addition, this AD requires the installation of a modified headrest securing rope with snap hook.

You may obtain further information by examining the MCAI in the AD docket.

Comments Back to Top

We gave the public the opportunity to participate in developing this AD. We received no comments on the SNPRM (77 FR 2236, January 17, 2012) or on the determination of the cost to the public.

Conclusion Back to Top

We reviewed the relevant data and determined that air safety and the public interest require adopting the AD as proposed except for minor editorial changes. We have determined that these minor changes:

  • Are consistent with the intent that was proposed in the SNPRM (77 FR 2236, January 17, 2012) for correcting the unsafe condition; and
  • Do not add any additional burden upon the public than was already proposed in the SNPRM (77 FR 2236, January 17, 2012).

Costs of Compliance Back to Top

We estimate that this AD will affect 16 products of U.S. registry. We also estimate that it will take about 2.5 work-hours per product to comply with the basic requirements of this AD. The average labor rate is $85 per work-hour. Required parts will cost about $1,088 per product.

Based on these figures, we estimate the cost of this AD on U.S. operators to be $20,808, or $1,300.50 per product.

In addition, we estimate that any necessary follow-on actions will take about 0.5 work-hour, for a cost of $42.50 per product. We have no way of determining the number of products that may need these actions.

Authority for This Rulemaking Back to Top

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.

Regulatory Findings Back to Top

We determined that 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 this AD:

(1) Is not a “significant regulatory action” under Executive Order 12866,

(2) Is not a “significant rule” under the DOT Regulatory Policies and Procedures (44 FR 11034, February 26, 1979),

(3) Will not affect intrastate aviation in Alaska, and

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

Examining the AD Docket Back to Top

You may examine the AD docket on the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov; or in person at the Docket Management Facility between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. The AD docket contains the SNPRM (77 FR 2236, January 17, 2012), the regulatory evaluation, any comments received, and other information. The street address for the Docket Office (telephone (800) 647-5527) is in the ADDRESSES section. Comments will be available in the AD docket shortly after receipt.

List of Subjects in 14 CFR Part 39 Back to Top

Adoption of the Amendment Back to Top

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

begin regulatory text

PART 39—AIRWORTHINESS DIRECTIVES Back to Top

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 AD:

2012-06-15DG Flugzeugbau GmbH: Amendment 39-16996; Docket No. FAA-2011-1342; Directorate Identifier 2011-CE-038-AD.

(a) Effective Date Back to Top

This airworthiness directive (AD) becomes effective May 15, 2012.

(b) Affected ADs Back to Top

None.

(c) Applicability Back to Top

This AD applies to DG Flugzeugbau GmbH Models DG-500 Elan Orion, DG-500 Elan Trainer, DG-500/20 Elan, and DG-500/22 Elan sailplanes and Models DG-500M and DG-500MB powered sailplanes, all serial numbers, that are:

(i) Equipped with a headrest on the rear seat; and

(ii) Certificated in any category.

(d) Subject Back to Top

Air Transport Association of America (ATA) Code 25: Equipment/Furnishing

(e) Reason Back to Top

This AD was prompted by mandatory continuing airworthiness information (MCAI) originated by an aviation authority of another country to identify and correct an unsafe condition on an aviation product. The MCAI describes the unsafe condition as incorrect re-installation of the rear cockpit securing rope for the headrest of the rear seat during maintenance. We are issuing this AD to correct the length of the rear cockpit headrest securing rope, which if too long, could cause the rear seat to interfere with the control stick of the sailplane and could result in loss of control of the sailplane.

(f) Actions and Compliance Back to Top

Unless already done, do the following actions:

(1) Within the next 30 days after May 15, 2012 (the effective date of this AD), inspect the rear cockpit headrest securing rope to determine the length. Do the inspection as specified in Instruction No. 2 of DG Flugzeugbau GmbH Technical Note No. 500/05, dated September 19, 2011.

(i) If the length of the rear cockpit headrest securing rope is more than 450 millimeters (mm) or less than 400 mm, before further flight after the inspection required in paragraph (f)(1) of this AD, adjust the length of the rear cockpit headrest securing ropeto a length between 400 mm and 450 mm as shown in Sketch 2 of DG Flugzeugbau GmbH Working Instruction No. 1 for TN348/20, Issue 3, dated September 13, 2011. After doing the adjustment, do the action required in paragraph (f)(2) of this AD.

(ii) If the length of the rear cockpit headrest securing rope is between 400 mm and 450 mm, do the action required in paragraph (f)(2) of this AD.

(2) Within 3 months after May 15, 2012 (the effective date of this AD), replace the rear cockpit headrest securing rope with a rear cockpit headrest securing rope with a snap hook. Do the replacement following DG Flugzeugbau GmbH Working Instruction No. 1 for TN348/20, Issue 3, dated September 13, 2011, as specified in Instruction No. 3 of DG Flugzeugbau GmbH Technical Note No. 500/05, dated September 19, 2011.

(3) Replacement of the rear cockpit headrest securing rope with a rear cockpit headrest securing rope with a snap hook done before May 15, 2012 (the effective date of this AD) following DG Flugzeugbau GmbH Working Instruction No. 1 for TN348/20, Issue 2, is considered acceptable for compliance with paragraph (f)(2) of this AD.

(4) Although the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) MCAI and DG Flugzeugbau GmbH Technical Note No. 500/05, dated September 19, 2011, allows the inspection required in paragraph (f)(1) of this AD to be done by a pilot-owner, the U.S. regulatory system requires all actions required by this AD be done by a certified mechanic.

(g) Other FAA AD Provisions Back to Top

The following provisions also apply to this AD:

(1) Alternative Methods of Compliance (AMOCs): The Manager, Standards Office, FAA, has the authority to approve AMOCs for this AD, if requested using the procedures found in 14 CFR 39.19. Send information to ATTN: Jim Rutherford, Aerospace Engineer, FAA, Small Airplane Directorate, 901 Locust, Room 301, Kansas City, Missouri 64106; telephone: (816) 329-4165; fax: (816) 329-4090; email: jim.rutherford@faa.gov. Before using any approved AMOC on any sailplane to which the AMOC applies, notify your appropriate principal inspector (PI) in the FAA Flight Standards District Office (FSDO), or lacking a PI, your local FSDO.

(2) Airworthy Product: For any requirement in this AD to obtain corrective actions from a manufacturer or other source, use these actions if they are FAA-approved. Corrective actions are considered FAA-approved if they are approved by the State of Design Authority (or their delegated agent). You are required to assure the product is airworthy before it is returned to service.

(3) Reporting Requirements: For any reporting requirement in this AD, a federal agency may not conduct or sponsor, and a person is not required to respond to, nor shall a person be subject to a penalty for failure to comply with a collection of information subject to the requirements of the Paperwork Reduction Act unless that collection of information displays a current valid OMB Control Number. The OMB Control Number for this information collection is 2120-0056. Public reporting for this collection of information is estimated to be approximately 5 minutes per response, including the time for reviewing instructions, completing and reviewing the collection of information. All responses to this collection of information are mandatory. Comments concerning the accuracy of this burden and suggestions for reducing the burden should be directed to the FAA at: 800 Independence Ave. SW., Washington, DC 20591, Attn: Information Collection Clearance Officer, AES-200.

(h) Related Information Back to Top

Refer to MCAI EASA AD No.: 2011-0191, dated September 30, 2011; DG Flugzeugbau GmbH Technical Note No. 500/05, dated September 19, 2011; and DG Flugzeugbau GmbH Working Instruction No. 1 for TN348/20, Issue 3, dated September 13, 2011, for related information.

(i) Material Incorporated by Reference Back to Top

(1) You must use the following service information to do the actions required by this AD, unless the AD specifies otherwise. The Director of the Federal Register approved the incorporation by reference (IBR) under 5 U.S.C. 552(a) and 1 CFR part 51.

(i) DG Flugzeugbau GmbH Technical Note No. 500/05, dated September 19, 2011, and

(ii) DG Flugzeugbau GmbH Working Instruction No. 1 for TN348/20, Issue 3, dated September 13, 2011.

(2) For service information identified in this AD, contact DG Flugzeugbau GmbH, Otto-Lilienthal-Weg 2, 76646 Bruchsal, Federal Republic of Germany; telephone: +49 (0) 7251 3020140; fax: +49 (0) 7251 3020149; Internet: http://www.dg-flugzeugbau.de/tech-mitteilungen-e.html; email: dirks@dg-flugzeugbau.de.

(3) You may review copies of the service information at the FAA, Small Airplane Directorate, 901 Locust, Kansas City, Missouri 64106. For information on the availability of this material at the FAA, call (816) 329-4148.

(4) You may also review copies of the service information that is incorporated by reference at the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA). For information on the availability of this material at an NARA facility, call 202-741-6030, or go to http://www.archives.gov/federal_register/code_of_federal_regulations/ibr_locations.html.

end regulatory text

Issued in Kansas City, Missouri, on March 19, 2012.

Earl Lawrence,

Manager, Small Airplane Directorate,Aircraft Certification Service.

[FR Doc. 2012-7003 Filed 4-9-12; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 4910-13-P

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