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Proposed Rule

Airworthiness Directives; Fokker Model F.28 Mark 0070 and 0100 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:

Notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM).

SUMMARY:

This document proposes the adoption of a new airworthiness directive (AD) that is applicable to all Fokker Model F.28 Mark 0070 and 0100 series airplanes. This proposal would require a one-time general visual inspection to detect any missing attachment bolts in the replaceable frame struts, and corrective actions, if necessary. This action is necessary to prevent excessive deformation of the floor structure in the event of rapid decompression in the lower cargo hold due to missing attachment bolts in the replaceable frame struts. Such deformation may result in the flight and engine control cables becoming jammed, and consequent reduced controllability of the airplane. This action is intended to address the identified unsafe condition.

DATES:

Comments must be received by April 29, 2002.

ADDRESSES:

Submit comments in triplicate to the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), Transport Airplane Directorate, ANM-114, Attention: Rules Docket No. 2001-NM-289-AD, 1601 Lind Avenue, SW., Renton, Washington 98055-4056. Comments may be inspected at this location between 9:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. Comments may be submitted via fax to (425) 227-1232. Comments may also be sent via the Internet using the following address: 9-anm-nprmcomment@faa.gov. Comments sent via fax or the Internet must contain “Docket No. 2001-NM-289-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 the proposed rule may be obtained from Fokker Services B.V., P.O. Box 231, 2150 AE Nieuw-Vennep, the Netherlands. This information may be examined at the FAA, Transport Airplane Directorate, 1601 Lind Avenue, SW., Renton, Washington.

Start Further Info

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Tom Rodriguez, Aerospace Engineer, International Branch, ANM-116, FAA, Transport Airplane Directorate, 1601 Lind Avenue, SW., Renton, Washington 98055-4056; telephone (425) 227-1137; fax (425) 227-1149.

End Further Info End Preamble Start Supplemental Information

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Comments Invited

Interested persons are invited to participate in the making of the proposed 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 above. All communications received on or before the closing date for comments, specified above, will be considered before taking action on the proposed rule. The proposals contained in this action may be changed in light of the comments received.

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 proposed AD is being requested.
  • Include justification (e.g., reasons or data) for each request. Start Printed Page 14892

Comments are specifically invited on the overall regulatory, economic, environmental, and energy aspects of the proposed 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 summarizing each FAA-public contact concerned with the substance of this proposal will be filed in the Rules Docket.

Commenters wishing the FAA to acknowledge receipt of their comments submitted in response to this action must submit a self-addressed, stamped postcard on which the following statement is made: “Comments to Docket Number 2001-NM-289-AD.” The postcard will be date stamped and returned to the commenter.

Availability of NPRMs

Any person may obtain a copy of this NPRM by submitting a request to the FAA, Transport Airplane Directorate, ANM-114, Attention: Rules Docket No. 2001-NM-289-AD, 1601 Lind Avenue, SW., Renton, Washington 98055-4056.

Discussion

The Civil Aviation Authority—The Netherlands (CAA-NL), which is the airworthiness authority for the Netherlands, notified the FAA that an unsafe condition may exist on all Fokker Model F.28 Mark 0070 and 0100 series airplanes. The CAA-NL advises that an operator discovered that an airframe strut connecting the floor beams and the fuselage frame was missing the lower attachment bolt; the bolt hole was not drilled and only a pilot hole was present. This condition, if not corrected, could result in excessive deformation of the floor structure in the event of a rapid decompression in the lower cargo hold. Such deformation may result in the flight and engine control cables becoming jammed, and consequent reduced controllability of the airplane.

Explanation of Relevant Service Information

Fokker Services B.V. has issued Service Bulletin SBF100-53-096, dated April 11, 2001. The service bulletin describes procedures for performing a one-time general visual inspection for detecting any missing attachment bolts in the replaceable frame struts; for drilling a new hole; and for installing a new bolt (including a nut and washer), if necessary. Accomplishment of the actions specified in the service bulletin is intended to adequately address the identified unsafe condition. The CAA-NL classified this service bulletin as mandatory and issued Dutch airworthiness directive 2001-055, dated April 27, 2001, in order to assure the continued airworthiness of these airplanes in the Netherlands.

FAA's Conclusions

These airplane models are manufactured in the Netherlands and are type certificated for operation in the United States under the provisions of section 21.29 of the Federal Aviation Regulations (14 CFR 21.29) and the applicable bilateral airworthiness agreement. Pursuant to this bilateral airworthiness agreement, the CAA-NL has kept the FAA informed of the situation described above. The FAA has examined the findings of the CAA-NL, reviewed all available information, and determined that AD action is necessary for products of these type designs that are certificated for operation in the United States.

Explanation of Requirements of Proposed Rule

Since an unsafe condition has been identified that is likely to exist or develop on other airplanes of the same type designs registered in the United States, the proposed AD would require accomplishment of the actions specified in the service bulletin described previously. If any missing attachment bolts are detected, the proposed AD would also require a general visual inspection to detect any deformation or crack in the affected floor beams and the fuselage frame C-channel at the strut attachment, and repair, if necessary.

Cost Impact

The FAA estimates that 139 airplanes of U.S. registry would be affected by this proposed AD, that it would take approximately 1 work hour per airplane to accomplish the proposed inspection, and that the average labor rate is $60 per work hour. Based on these figures, the cost impact of the proposed AD on U.S. operators is estimated to be $8,340, or $60 per airplane.

The cost impact figure discussed above is based on assumptions that no operator has yet accomplished any of the proposed requirements of this AD action, and that no operator would accomplish those actions in the future if this proposed AD were not adopted. The cost impact figures discussed in AD rulemaking actions represent only the time necessary to perform the specific actions actually required by the AD. These figures typically do not include incidental costs, such as the time required to gain access and close up, planning time, or time necessitated by other administrative actions.

Regulatory Impact

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 proposal would not have federalism implications under Executive Order 13132.

For the reasons discussed above, I certify that this proposed regulation (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); 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 is contained in the Rules Docket. A copy of it may be obtained by contacting the Rules Docket at the location provided under the caption ADDRESSES.

Start List of Subjects

List of Subjects in 14 CFR Part 39

End List of Subjects

The Proposed Amendment

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

Start Part

PART 39—AIRWORTHINESS DIRECTIVES

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

Start Authority

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

End Authority
[Amended]

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

Fokker Services B.V.: Docket 2001-NM-289-AD.

Applicability: All Model F.28 Mark 0070 and 0100 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 (c) of this AD. The request should include an assessment of Start Printed Page 14893the 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 excessive deformation of the floor structure to the extent that flight and engine control cables might jam, accomplish the following:

Inspection

(a) Within 14 months after the effective date of this AD, do a one-time general visual inspection to detect any missing attachment bolts in the replaceable frame struts per Part 1, Part 2, and Part 3 of the Accomplishment Instructions of Fokker Service Bulletin SBF100-53-096, dated April 11, 2001; as applicable.

Corrective Actions

(b) If any attachment bolts are found missing during the inspection required by paragraph (a) of this AD, before further flight, do the actions specified in paragraphs (b)(1) and (b)(2) of this AD.

(1) Drill a new hole and install a new bolt (including nut and washer), per the Accomplishment Instructions of Fokker Service Bulletin SBF100-53-096, dated April 11, 2001.

(2) Do a general visual inspection to detect any deformation or crack in the affected floor beams and the fuselage frame C-channel at the strut attachment. If any deformation or crack exists, before further flight, repair per a method approved by either the Manager, International Branch, ANM-116, FAA, Transport Airplane Directorate; or the Civil Aviation Authority—The Netherlands (CAA-NL) (or its delegated agent).

Note 2:

For the purposes of this AD, a general visual inspection is defined as: “A visual examination of an interior or exterior area, installation, or assembly to detect obvious damage, failure, or irregularity. This level of inspection is made under normally available lighting conditions such as daylight, hangar lighting, flashlight, or drop-light, and may require removal or opening of access panels or doors. Stands, ladders, or platforms may be required to gain proximity to the area being checked.”

Alternative Methods of Compliance

(c) 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. 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 3:

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

(d) 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.

Note 4:

The subject of this AD is addressed in Dutch airworthiness directive 2001-055, dated April 27, 2001.

Start Signature

Issued in Renton, Washington, on March 22, 2002.

Kalene C. Yanamura,

Acting Manager, Transport Airplane Directorate, Aircraft Certification Service.

End Signature End Part End Supplemental Information

[FR Doc. 02-7429 Filed 3-27-02; 8:45 am]

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