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Proposed Rule

Airworthiness Directives; Raytheon Aircraft Company Beech Models 1900, 1900C, and 1900D Airplanes

Document Details

Information about this document as published in the Federal Register.

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AGENCY:

Federal Aviation Administration, DOT.

ACTION:

Notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM).

SUMMARY:

This document proposes to adopt a new airworthiness directive (AD) that would apply to certain Raytheon Aircraft Company (Raytheon) Beech Models 1900, 1900C, and 1900D airplanes. The proposed AD would require you to inspect all four flap flexible shaft assemblies for the correct diagonal wrap and the correct installation. The proposed AD would also require you to replace any flap flexible shaft assembly that has an incorrect diagonal wrap or incorrect installation. The proposed AD is the result of several occurrences of flap extension/retraction failures on the affected airplanes due to the inner flexible shaft ends separating or disengaging. The actions specified by the proposed Ad are intended to prevent these flap extension/retraction failures due to incorrectly configured flap flexible shaft assemblies. Such failure could result in an asymmetric flap condition during flight if the flap safety switch fails to function properly.

DATES:

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) must receive any comments on this rule on or before August 3, 2001.

ADDRESSES:

Submit comments in triplicate to FAA, Central Region, Office of the Regional Counsel, Attention: Rules Docket No. 2001-CE-20-AD, 901 Locust, Room 506, Kansas City, Missouri 64106. Comments may be inspected at this location between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m., Monday through Friday, holidays excepted.

Service information that applies to the proposed AD may be obtained from Raytheon Aircraft Company, P.O. Box 85, Wichita, Kansas 67201-0085; telephone: (800) 429-5372 or (316) 676-3140. This information also may be examined at the Rules Docket at the address above.

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FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Paul DeVore, Aerospace Engineer, FAA, Wichita Aircraft Certification Office, 1801 Airport Road, Mid-Continent Airport, Wichita, Kansas 67209; telephone: (316) 946-4142; facsimile: (316) 946-4407.

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SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Comments Invited

How do I comment on the proposed AD? The FAA invites comments on this proposed rule. You may submit whatever written data, views, or arguments you choose. You need to include the rule's docket number and submit your comments in triplicate to the address specified under the caption ADDRESSES. The FAA will consider all comments received on or before the closing date. We may amend the proposed rule in light of comments received. Factual information that supports your ideas and suggestions is extremely helpful in evaluating the effectiveness of the proposed AD action and determining whether we need to take additional rulemaking action.

Are there any specific portions of the proposed AD I should pay attention to? The FAA specifically invites comments on the overall regulatory, economic, environmental, and energy aspects of the proposed rule that might suggest a need to modify the rule. You may examine all comments we receive before and after the closing date of the rule in the Rules Docket. We will file a report in the Rules Docket that summarizes each FAA contact with the public that concerns the substantive parts of the proposed AD.

We are re-examining the writing style we currently use in regulatory documents, in response to the Presidential memorandum of June 1, 1998. That memorandum requires federal agencies to communicate more clearly with the public. We are interested in your comments on whether the style of this document is clear, and any other suggestions you might have to improve the clarity of FAA communications that affect you. You can get more information about the Presidential memorandum and the plain language initiative at http://www.plainlanguage.gov.

How can I be sure FAA received my comment? If you want us to acknowledge the receipt of your comments, you must include a self-addressed, stamped postcard. On the postcard, write “Comments to Docket No. 2001-CE-20-AD.” We will date stamp and mail the postcard back to you.

Discussion

What events have caused this AD? The FAA has received reports of flap extension/retraction system failures on Raytheon Model 1900D airplanes. The failures occurred when the inner flexible shaft ends separated or disengaged. One of these failures resulted in an asymmetric flap condition when the flap safety switch failed to function properly.

The flap flexible shafts are designed to carry more torque in one direction than the other. If installed on the wrong side of the airplane, the excessive torque load leads to these failures. Raytheon informed FAA that the flap flexible shafts may have been installed on the wrong side of the airplane on certain Beech Models 1900, 1900C, and 1900D airplanes.

What are the consequences if the condition is not corrected? Flap extension/retraction failures caused by incorrectly configured flap flexible shaft assemblies could result in loss of flap function or an asymmetric flap condition during flight if the flap safety switch fails to function properly.

Relevant Service Information

Is there service information that applies to this subject? Raytheon has issued Mandatory Service Bulletin SB 27-3397, Issued: January, 2001.

What are the provisions of this service bulletin? The service bulletin inclues procedures for:

—Inspecting the inner flexible (drive) shaft of all four flap flexible shaft assemblies for the correct diagonal wrap and the correct installation; and

—Replacing any flap flexible shaft assembly that has an incorrect diagonal wrap or incorrect installation.Start Printed Page 30094

The FAA's Determination and an Explanation of the Provisions of the Proposed AD

What has FAA decided? After examining the circumstances and reviewing all available information related to the incidents described above, including the referenced service bulletin, we have determined that:

—The unsafe condition referenced in this document exists or could develop on other Raytheon Beech Models 1900, 1900C, and 1900D airplanes of the same type design;

—The actions specified in the previously-referenced service information should be accomplished on the affected airplanes; and

—AD action should be taken in order to correct this unsafe condition.

What would the proposed AD require? This proposed AD would require you to incorporate the actions in the previously-referenced service bulletin.

Cost Impact

How many airplanes would the proposed AD impact? We estimate that the proposed AD would affect 205 airplanes in the U.S. registry.

What would be the cost impact of the proposed AD on owners/operators of the affected airplanes? We estimate the following costs to accomplish the proposed inspection:

Labor costParts costTotal cost per airplaneTotal cost on U.S. operators
2 workhours × $60 per hour = $120No parts required for the inspection$120 per airplane$24,600.

We estimate the following costs to accomplish any necessary replacements that would be required based on the results of the proposed inspection. We have no way of determining the number of airplanes that may need such replacements.

Labor costParts costCost per flap shaft
8 workhours per flap shaft × $60 per hour = $480$232 per flap shaft$712 per flap shaft (total of four per airplane).

The manufacturer will provide warranty credit for labor and parts to the extent noted under the Warranty Credit section of Raytheon Mandatory Service Bulletin SB 27-3397, Issued: January, 2001.

Regulatory Impact

Would this proposed AD impact various entities? The regulations proposed herein 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. Therefore, it is determined that this proposed rule would not have federalism implications under Executive Order 13132.

Would this proposed AD involve a significant rule or regulatory action? 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) if promulgated, 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 copy of the draft regulatory evaluation prepared for this action has been placed in the Rules Docket. A copy of it may be obtained by contacting 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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The Proposed Amendment

Accordingly, under the authority delegated to me by the Administrator, the Federal Aviation Administration proposes to amend 14 CFR part 39 of the Federal Aviation Regulations as follows:

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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]

2. FAA amends § 39.13 by adding a new airworthiness directive (AD) to read as follows:

Raytheon Aircraft Company: Docket No. 2001-CE-20-AD.

(a) What airplanes are affected by this AD? This AD affects the following model and serial number airplanes that are certified in any category:

ModelSerial No.
Beech Model 1900UA-2 and UA-3.
Beech Model 1900CUB-1 through UB-74 and UC-1 through UC-174.
Beech Model 1900C (C-12J)UD-1 through UD-6.
Beech Model 1900DUE-1 through UE-345; UE-347 through UE-361; UE-364; UN-367; UE-373; and UE-379.

(b) Who must comply with this AD? Anyone who wishes to operate any of the above airplane must comply with this AD.

(c) What problem does this AD address? The actions specified by this AD are intended to prevent flap extension/retraction failures due to incorrectly configured flap flexible shaft assemblies. Such failure could result in any asymmetric flap condition during flight if the flap safety switch fails to function properly.

(d) What actions must I accomplish to address this problem? To address this problem, you must accomplish the following:Start Printed Page 30095

ActionsComplianceProcedures
(1) Inspect the inner flexible (drive) shaft of all four flap flexible shaft assemblies for the correct diagonal wrap and the correct installationWithin the next 200 hours time-in-service (TIS) after the effective date of this AD, unless already accomplishIn accordance with the ACCOMPLISHMENT INSTRUCTIONS section of Raytheon Aircraft Mandatory Service Bulletin SB 27-3397, Issued: January 2, 2001.
(2) Replace any flap flexible shaft assembly found to have an incorrect diagonal wrap or incorrect installation during the inspection required by paragraph (d)(1) of this ADPrior to further flight after the inspection required in paragraph (d)(1) of this ADIn accordance with the ACCOMPLISHMENT INSTRUCTIONS section of Raytheon Aircraft Mandatory Service Bulletin SB 27-3397, Issued: January, 2001, and the applicable maintenance manual.

(e) Can I comply with this AD in any other way? You may use an alternative method of compliance or adjust the compliance time if:

(1) Your alternative method of compliance provides an equivalent level of safety; and

(2) The Manager, Wichita Aircraft Certification Office (ACO), approves your alternative. Submit your request through an FAA Principal Maintenance Inspector, who may add comments and then send it to the Manager, Wichita ACO.

Note:

This AD applies to each airplane is identified in paragraph (a) of this AD, 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 (e) of this AD. The request should include an assessment of the effect of the modification, alternation, or repair on the unsafe condition addressed by this AD; and, if you have not eliminated the unsafe condition, specific actions you propose to address it.

(f) Where can I get information about any already-approved alternative methods of compliance? Contact Paul DeVore, Aerospace Engineer, FAA, Wichita Aircraft Certification Office, 1801 Airport Road Mid-Continent Airport, Wichita, Kansas 67209; telephone: (316) 946-4142; facsimile: (316) 946-4407.

(g) What if I need to fly the airplane to another location to comply with this AD? The FAA can issue a special flight permit under sections 21.197 and 21.199 of the Federal Aviation Regulations (14 CFR 21.197 and 21.199) to operate your airplane to a location where you can accomplish the requirements of this AD.

(h) How do I get copies of the documents referenced in this AD? You may obtain copies of the documents referenced in this AD from Raytheon Aircraft Company, P.O. Box 85, Wichita, Kansas 67201-0085; telephone (800) 429-5372 or (316) 676-3140. You may examine these documents at FAA, Central Region, Office of the Regional Counsel, 901 Locust, Room 506, Kansas City, Missouri 64106.

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Issued in Kansas City, Missouri, on May 25, 2001.

James E. Jackson,

Acting Manager, Small Airplane Directorate, Aircraft Certification Service.

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[FR Doc. 01-14006 Filed 6-4-01; 8:45 am]

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