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Airworthiness Directives; McDonnell Douglas Model MD-11 Series Airplanes

Document Details

Information about this document as published in the Federal Register.

Published Document

This document has been published in the Federal Register. Use the PDF linked in the document sidebar for the official electronic format.

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AGENCY:

Federal Aviation Administration, DOT.

ACTION:

Final rule.

SUMMARY:

This amendment adopts a new airworthiness directive (AD), applicable to certain McDonnell Douglas Model MD-11 series airplanes, that requires a one-time detailed visual inspection of the wire bundle installation behind the first observer's station to detect damaged or chafed wires; and corrective action, if necessary. This amendment is prompted by a report indicating that the wire bundle contained in the feedthrough behind the first observer's station was contacting the bottom portion of the feedthrough. The actions specified by this AD are intended to prevent such contact, which could cause cable chafing, electrical arcing, smoke, or fire in the cockpit.

DATES:

Effective March 23, 2000.

The incorporation by reference of certain publications listed in the regulations is approved by the Director of the Federal Register as of March 23, 2000.

ADDRESSES:

The service information referenced in this AD may be obtained from Boeing Commercial Aircraft Group, Long Beach Division, 3855 Lakewood Boulevard, Long Beach, CA 90846, Attention: Technical Publications Business Administration, Dept. C1-L51 (2-60). This information may be examined at the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), Transport Airplane Directorate, Rules Docket, 1601 Lind Avenue, SW., Renton, Washington; or at the FAA, Transport Airplane Directorate, Los Angeles Aircraft Certification Office, 3960 Paramount Boulevard, Lakewood, CA; or at the Office of the Federal Register, 800 North Capitol Street, NW., suite 700, Washington, DC.

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FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Brett Portwood, Technical Specialist, Systems and Equipment Branch, ANM-130L, FAA, Transport Airplane Directorate, Los Angeles Aircraft Certification Office, 3960 Paramount Boulevard, Lakewood, CA 90712-4137; telephone (562) 627-5350; fax (562) 627-5210.

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SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

A proposal to amend part 39 of the Federal Aviation Regulations (14 CFR part 39) to include an airworthiness directive (AD) that is applicable to certain McDonnell Douglas Model MD-11 series airplanes was published in the Federal Register on October 27, 1999 (64 FR 57814). That action proposed to require a one-time detailed visual inspection of the wire bundle installation behind the first observer's station to detect damaged or chafed wires; and corrective action, if necessary.

Comments

Interested persons have been afforded an opportunity to participate in the making of this amendment. Due consideration has been given to the comments received.

One commenter supports the proposed rule. One commenter states that it is not affected by the proposed rule. Start Printed Page 8029

Conclusion

After careful review of the available data, including the comments noted above, the FAA has determined that air safety and the public interest require the adoption of the rule as proposed.

Cost Impact

There are approximately 63 airplanes of the affected design in the worldwide fleet. The FAA estimates that 12 airplanes of U.S. registry will be affected by this AD, that it will take approximately 1 work hour per airplane to accomplish the required actions, and that the average labor rate is $60 per work hour. Based on these figures, the cost impact of the AD on U.S. operators is estimated to be $720, or $60 per airplane.

The cost impact figure discussed above is based on assumptions that no operator has yet accomplished any of the requirements of this AD action, and that no operator would accomplish those actions in the future if this AD were not adopted.

Regulatory Impact

The regulations adopted herein 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. Therefore, it is determined that this final rule does not have federalism implications under Executive Order 13132.

For the reasons discussed above, I certify that this action (1) is not a “significant regulatory action” under Executive Order 12866; (2) is not a “significant rule” under DOT Regulatory Policies and Procedures (44 FR 11034, February 26, 1979); 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. A final evaluation has been prepared for this action and it is contained in the Rules Docket. A copy of it may be obtained from the Rules Docket at the location provided under the caption ADDRESSES.

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List of Subjects in 14 CFR Part 39

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Adoption of the Amendment

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Accordingly, pursuant to the authority delegated to me by the Administrator, the Federal Aviation Administration amends part 39 of the Federal Aviation Regulations (

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PART 39—AIRWORTHINESS DIRECTIVES

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

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

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[Amended]
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2. Section 39.13 is amended by adding the following new airworthiness directive:

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2000-03-13 McDonnell Douglas: Amendment 39-11572. Docket 99-NM-171-AD.

Applicability: Model MD-11 series airplanes, as listed in McDonnell Douglas Alert Service Bulletin MD11-24A041, Revision 01, dated April 26, 1999; certificated in any category.

Note 1:

This AD applies to each airplane identified in the preceding applicability provision, regardless of whether it has been modified, altered, or repaired in the area subject to the requirements of this AD. For airplanes that have been modified, altered, or repaired so that the performance of the requirements of this AD is affected, the owner/operator must request approval for an alternative method of compliance in accordance with paragraph (b) of this AD. The request should include an assessment of the effect of the modification, alteration, or repair on the unsafe condition addressed by this AD; and, if the unsafe condition has not been eliminated, the request should include specific proposed actions to address it.

Compliance: Required as indicated, unless accomplished previously.

To prevent the wire bundle contained in the feedthrough from contacting the bottom of the feedthrough which could cause cable chafing, electrical arcing, and smoke or fire in the cockpit, accomplish the following:

Inspection and Modification

(a) Within 1 year after the effective date of this AD, perform a one-time detailed visual inspection of the wire bundle installation behind the first observer's station to detect damaged or chafed wires, in accordance with McDonnell Douglas Alert Service Bulletin MD11-24A041, Revision 01, dated April 26, 1999.

Note 2:

For the purposes of this AD, a detailed inspection is defined as: “An intensive visual examination of a specific structural area, system, installation, or assembly to detect damage, failure, or irregularity. Available lighting is normally supplemented with a direct source of good lighting at intensity deemed appropriate by the inspector. Inspection aids such as mirror, magnifying lenses, etc. may be used. Surface cleaning and elaborate access procedures may be required.”

(1) For airplanes identified as Group 1 in the service bulletin: Accomplish paragraph (a)(1)(i) or (a)(1)(ii) of this AD, as applicable.

(i) If no damaged or chafed wire is found, no further action is required by this AD.

(ii) If any damaged or chafed wire is found, prior to further flight, repair in accordance with the service bulletin;

(2) For airplanes identified as Group 2 in the service bulletin: Accomplish paragraph (a)(2)(i) or (a)(2)(ii) of this AD, as applicable.

(i) If no damaged or chafed wire is found, within 1 year after the effective date of this AD, revise the wire bundle support clamp installation at the observer's station in accordance with the service bulletin.

(ii) If any damaged or chafed wire is found, prior to further flight, repair the wiring, and revise the wire bundle support clamp installation at the observer's station in accordance with the service bulletin.

Alternative Methods of Compliance

(b) An alternative method of compliance or adjustment of the compliance time that provides an acceptable level of safety may be used if approved by the Manager, Los Angeles Aircraft Certification Office (ACO), FAA, Transport Airplane Directorate. Operators shall submit their requests through an appropriate FAA Principal Maintenance Inspector, who may add comments and then send it to the Manager, Los Angeles ACO.

Note 3:

Information concerning the existence of approved alternative methods of compliance with this AD, if any, may be obtained from the Los Angeles ACO.

Special Flight Permits

(c) Special flight permits may be issued in accordance with §§ 21.197 and 21.199 of the Federal Aviation Regulations (14 CFR 21.197 and 21.199) to operate the airplane to a location where the requirements of this AD can be accomplished.

Incorporation by Reference

(d) The actions shall be done in accordance with McDonnell Douglas Alert Service Bulletin MD11-24A041, Revision 01, dated April 26, 1999. This incorporation by reference was approved by the Director of the Federal Register in accordance with 5 U.S.C. 552(a) and 1 CFR part 51. Copies may be obtained from Boeing Commercial Aircraft Group, Long Beach Division, 3855 Lakewood Boulevard, Long Beach, California 90846, Attention: Technical Publications Business Administration, Dept. C1-L51 (2-60). Copies may be inspected at the FAA, Transport Airplane Directorate, 1601 Lind Avenue, SW., Renton, Washington; or at the FAA, Transport Airplane Directorate, Los Angeles Aircraft Certification Office, 3960 Paramount Boulevard, Lakewood, California; or at the Office of the Federal Register, 800 North Capitol Street, NW., suite 700, Washington, DC.

(e) This amendment becomes effective on March 23, 2000.

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Issued in Renton, Washington, on February 10, 2000.

Donald L. Riggin,

Acting Manager, Transport Airplane Directorate, Aircraft Certification Service.

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[FR Doc. 00-3617 Filed 2-16-00; 8:45 am]

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