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Airworthiness Directives; Saab Model SAAB 340B Series Airplanes

Document Details

Information about this document as published in the Federal Register.

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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; request for comments.

SUMMARY:

This amendment adopts a new airworthiness directive (AD), applicable to certain Saab Model SAAB 340B series airplanes. This action requires adjustment of the cargo baggage net, replacement of baggage net placards with new placards, and installation of certain new baggage net placards. This action is necessary to prevent failure of the cargo bulkhead floor attachments, which could result in damage to the airplane structure and possible injury to passengers and crewmembers. This action is intended to address the identified unsafe condition.

DATES:

Effective September 5, 2000.

The incorporation by reference of certain publications listed in the regulations is approved by the Director of the Federal Register as of September 5, 2000.

Comments for inclusion in the Rules Docket must be received on or before September 20, 2000.

ADDRESSES:

Submit comments in triplicate to the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), Transport Airplane Directorate, ANM-114, Attention: Rules Docket No. 2000-NM-225-AD, 1601 Lind Avenue, SW., Renton, Washington 98055-4056. Comments may be inspected at this location between 9 a.m. and 3 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. Comments may be submitted via fax to (425) 227-1232. Comments also may be sent via the Internet using the following address: 9-anm-iarcomment@faa.gov. Comments sent via fax or the Internet must contain “Docket No. 2000-NM-225-AD” in the subject line and need not be submitted in triplicate. Comments sent via the Internet as attached electronic files must be formatted in Microsoft Word 97 for Windows or ASCII text.

The service information referenced in this AD may be obtained from Saab Aircraft AB, SAAB Aircraft Product Support, S-581.88, Linköping, Sweden. This information may be examined at Start Printed Page 50629the 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.

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FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

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

End Further Info End Preamble Start Supplemental Information

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

The Luftfartsverket (LFV), which is the airworthiness authority for Sweden, notified the FAA that an unsafe condition may exist on certain Saab Model SAAB 340B series airplanes. The LFV advises that it has received reports indicating that, on certain airplanes having a kinked bulkhead configuration, the cargo baggage net is installed such that the forward webbing of the net is too close to the aft face of the bulkhead. With this net installation, baggage may structurally overload the bulkhead's floor attachments. This condition, if not corrected, could result in failure of the cargo bulkhead floor attachments, damage to the airplane structure, and possible injury to passengers and crewmembers.

Related Rulemaking

The FAA has previously issued AD 98-15-23 (63 FR 39496, amendment 39-10449, July 6, 1998), which, for certain Saab Model SAAB 340B series airplanes, requires adjustment of the cargo baggage net, replacement of baggage net placards, and installation of new baggage net placards. Since issuance of that AD, the FAA has determined that additional airplanes (serial numbers 162, 163, and 171) are subject to the same unsafe condition addressed in that AD.

Explanation of Relevant Service Information

Saab has issued Service Bulletin 340-25-244, Revision 01, dated May 5, 2000, which describes procedures for adjustment of the cargo baggage net, replacement of the baggage net placard on the aft face of the kinked bulkhead with a new placard, and installation of new placards on the right-hand cargo bay panel. Accomplishment of the actions specified in the service bulletin is intended to adequately address the unsafe condition. The LFV classified this service bulletin as mandatory and issued Swedish airworthiness directive (SAD) 1-118 R1, dated May 5, 2000, in order to assure the continued airworthiness of these airplanes in Sweden.

FAA's Conclusions

This airplane model is manufactured in Sweden and is type certificated for operation in the United States under the provisions of section 21.29 of the Federal Aviation Regulations (14 CFR 21.19) and the applicable bilateral airworthiness agreement. Pursuant to this bilateral airworthiness agreement, the LFV has kept the FAA informed of the situation described above. The FAA has examined the findings of the LFV, reviewed all available information, and determined that AD action is necessary for products of this type design that are certificated for operation in the United States.

Explanation of Requirements of the Rule

Since an unsafe condition has been identified that is likely to exist or develop on other airplanes of the same type design registered in the United States, this AD is being issued to require accomplishment of the actions specified in the service bulletin described previously.

Cost Impact

None of the Saab Model SAAB 340B series airplanes affected by this action are on the U.S. Register. All airplanes included in the applicability 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 actions, at an average labor rate of $60 per work hour. Required parts would be supplied by the manufacturer at no cost to the operators. Based on these figures, the cost impact of this AD would be $60 per airplane.

Determination of Rule's Effective Date

Since this AD action does not affect any airplane that is currently on the U.S. register, it has no adverse economic impact and imposes no additional burden on any person. Therefore, prior notice and public procedures hereon are unnecessary and the amendment may be made effective in less than 30 days after publication in the Federal Register.

Comments Invited

Although this action is in the form of a final rule and was not preceded by notice and opportunity for public comment, comments are invited on this rule. Interested persons are invited to comment on this rule by submitting such written data, views, or arguments as they may desire. Communications shall identify the Rules Docket number and be submitted in triplicate to the address specified under the caption ADDRESSES. All communications received on or before the closing date for comments will be considered, and this rule may be amended in light of the comments received. Factual information that supports the commenter's ideas and suggestions is extremely helpful in evaluating the effectiveness of the AD action and determining whether additional rulemaking action would be needed.

Submit comments using the following format:

  • Organize comments issue-by-issue. For example, discuss a request to change the compliance time and a request to change the service bulletin reference as two separate issues.
  • For each issue, state what specific change to the AD is being requested.
  • Include justification (e.g., reasons or data) for each request.

Comments are specifically invited on the overall regulatory, economic, environmental, and energy aspects of the rule that might suggest a need to modify the rule. All comments submitted will be available, both before and after the closing date for comments, in the Rules Docket for examination by interested persons. A report that summarizes each FAA-public contact concerned with the substance of this AD will be filed in the Rules Docket.

Commenters wishing the FAA to acknowledge receipt of their comments submitted in response to this rule must submit a self-addressed, stamped postcard on which the following statement is made: “Comments to Docket Number 2000-NM-225-AD.” The postcard will be date stamped and returned to the commenter.

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 Start Printed Page 50630Regulatory 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.

Start List of Subjects

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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2000-16-15 SAAB Aircraft AB: Amendment 39-11872. Docket 2000-NM-225-AD.

Applicability: Model SAAB 340B series airplanes, serial numbers 162, 163, and 171; 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 failure of the cargo bulkhead floor attachments, which could result in damage to the airplane structure and possible injury to passengers and crewmembers, accomplish the following:

Corrective Actions

(a) Within 3 months after the effective date of this AD, adjust the cargo baggage net; replace the baggage net placard on the aft face of the kinked bulkhead with a new placard; and install new placards on the right-hand cargo bay panel; in accordance with Saab Service Bulletin 340-25-244, Revision 01, dated May 5, 2000.

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 2:

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 sections 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 Saab Service Bulletin 340-25-244, Revision 01, dated May 5, 2000. 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 Saab Aircraft AB, SAAB Aircraft Product Support, S-581.88, Linköping, Sweden. 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 3:

The subject of this AD is addressed in Swedish airworthiness directive (SAD) 1-118 R1, dated May 5, 2000.

(e) This amendment becomes effective on September 5, 2000.

Start Signature

Issued in Renton, Washington, on August 11, 2000.

Donald L. Riggin,

Acting Manager, Transport Airplane Directorate, Aircraft Certification Service.

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[FR Doc. 00-20964 Filed 8-18-00; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 4910-13-U