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Rule

Airworthiness Directives; Airbus Model A330 and A340 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.

Start Preamble

AGENCY:

Federal Aviation Administration, DOT.

ACTION:

Final rule.

SUMMARY:

This amendment adopts a new airworthiness directive (AD), applicable to all Airbus Model A330 and A340 series airplanes, that requires repetitive ultrasonic inspections to detect corrosion of the retraction links of the main landing gear (MLG), and replacement of the retraction link with a new retraction link, if necessary. This amendment is prompted by issuance of mandatory continuing airworthiness information by a foreign civil airworthiness authority. The actions specified by this AD are intended to detect and correct corrosion of the retraction link of the MLG, which could result in reduced structural integrity and possible collapse of the MLG.

DATES:

Effective July 18, 2000. The incorporation by reference of certain publications listed in the regulations is approved by the Director of the Federal Register as of July 18, 2000.

ADDRESSES:

The service information referenced in this AD may be obtained from Airbus Industrie, 1 Rond Point Maurice Bellonte, 31707 Blagnac Cedex, France. 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 Office of the Federal Register, 800 North Capitol Street, NW., suite 700, Washington, DC.

Start Further Info

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Norman B. Martenson, Manager, International Branch, ANM-116, Transport Airplane Directorate, 1601 Lind Avenue, SW., Renton, Washington 98055-4056; telephone (425) 227-2110; fax (425) 227-1149.

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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 all Airbus Model A330 and A340 series airplanes was published in the Federal Register on April 7, 2000 (65 FR 18258). That action proposed to require repetitive ultrasonic inspections to detect corrosion of the retraction links of the main landing gear (MLG), and replacement of the retraction link with a new retraction link, if necessary.

Comments

Interested persons have been afforded an opportunity to participate in the making of this amendment. No comments were submitted in response to the proposal or the FAA's determination of the cost to the public.

Conclusion

The FAA has determined that air safety and the public interest require the adoption of the rule as proposed.

Cost Impact

None of the airplanes affected by this action are on the U.S. Register. All airplanes included in the applicablity of this rule currently are operated by non-U.S. operators under foreign registry; therefore, they are not directly affected by this AD action. However, the FAA considers that this rule is necessary to ensure that the unsafe condition is addressed in the event that any of these subject airplanes are imported and placed on the U.S. Register in the future.

Should an affected airplane be imported and placed on the U.S. Register in the future, it would require approximately 1 work hour to accomplish the required inspection, at an average labor rate of $60 per work hour. Based on these figures, the cost impact of this AD would be $60 per airplane, per inspection cycle.

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) Start Printed Page 37029will 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

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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2000-11-26 Airbus Industrie: Amendment 39-11775. Docket 2000-NM-53-AD.

Applicability: All Model A330 and A340 series airplanes, 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 detect and correct corrosion of the retraction links of the main landing gear (MLG), which could result in reduced structural integrity and possible collapse of the MLG, accomplish the following:

Repetitive Ultrasonic Inspections

(a) Within 36 months time-in-service on any new retraction link, or within 2 months after the effective date of this AD, whichever occurs later, perform an ultrasonic inspection to detect corrosion of the retraction links left-and right-hand of the MLG, in accordance with Airbus Service Bulletin A330-32-3105, Revision 01, dated December 14, 1999 (for Model A330 series airplanes), or Airbus Service Bulletin A340-32-4148, Revision 01, dated December 14, 1999 (for Model A340 series airplanes), as applicable.

(1) If no corrosion is detected, or if corrosion is detected that is within the limits specified in the applicable service bulletin, repeat the inspection thereafter at intervals not to exceed 6 months.

(2) If any corrosion is detected that is outside the limits specified in the applicable service bulletin, replace the affected retraction link with a new retraction link at the time specified and in accordance with the procedures specified in the applicable service bulletin. Thereafter, repeat the inspection specified in paragraph (a) on any new retraction links, at the time specified in paragraph (a) of this AD.

Note 2:

The Airbus service bulletins reference Messier-Dowty Service Bulletins A33/34-32-151, Revision 3, including Appendix A, and A33/34-32-152, Revision 3, including Appendix A, each dated January 11, 2000, as additional sources of service information for accomplishing the repetitive inspections.

Note 3:

Although the inspection schedule of this AD applies to both left-and right-hand retraction links of the MLG, replacement of a retraction link, prior to scheduled replacement, would result in subsequent staggered inspections for the remainder of the retraction links.

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, International Branch, ANM-116, 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, International Branch, ANM-116.

Note 4:

Information concerning the existence of approved alternative methods of compliance with this AD, if any, may be obtained from the International Branch, ANM-116.

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 Airbus Service Bulletin A330-32-3105, Revision 01, dated December 14, 1999; or Airbus Service Bulletin A340-32-4148, Revision 01, dated December 14, 1999; as applicable. 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 Airbus Industrie, 1 Rond Point Maurice Bellonte, 31707 Blagnac Cedex, France. Copies may be inspected at the FAA, Transport Airplane Directorate, 1601 Lind Avenue, SW., Renton, Washington; or at the Office of the Federal Register, 800 North Capitol Street, NW., suite 700, Washington, DC.

Note 5:

The subject of this AD is addressed in French airworthiness directives 2000-013-107(B) R1, dated February 9, 2000, and 2000-015-132(B), dated January 12, 2000.

(e) This amendment becomes effective on July 18, 2000.

Start Signature

Issued in Renton, Washington, on June 2, 2000.

Donald L. Riggin,

Acting Manager, Transport Airplane Directorate, Aircraft Certification Service.

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[FR Doc. 00-14433 Filed 6-12-00; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 4910-13-U