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Proposed Rule

Airworthiness Directives; Fokker Model F27 Mark 100, 200, 300, 400, 500, 600, and 700 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:

Notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM).

SUMMARY:

This document proposes the adoption of a new airworthiness directive (AD) that is applicable to all Fokker Model F27 Mark 100, 200, 300, 400, 500, 600, and 700 series airplanes. This proposal would require repetitive inspections of the control panel of the direct current (DC) generator for discrepancies, and replacement of any discrepant part. This action is necessary to prevent the loss of both DC generator systems and loss of several other airplane systems, which could lead to the pilot's inability to maintain controlled flight. This action is intended to address the identified unsafe condition.

DATES:

Comments must be received by August 28, 2003.

ADDRESSES:

Submit comments in triplicate to the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), Transport Airplane Directorate, ANM-114, Attention: Rules Docket No. 2002-NM-253-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 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. 2002-NM-253-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 or 2000 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.

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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.

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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.

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 2002-NM-253-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. 2002-NM-253-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 F27 Mark 100, 200, 300, 400, 500, 600, and 700 series airplanes. The CAA-NL advises that it has received a number of reports of direct current (DC) generator overvoltages, which resulted in loss of both DC generator systems and loss of several other airplane systems. The overvoltages were caused by the incorrect installation of DC generator system parts, including bad solder joints, bad wire insulation, and incorrect functioning of relays and resistors. These conditions, if not corrected, could result in the loss of both DC generator systems and loss of several other airplane systems, which could lead to the pilot's inability to maintain controlled flight.

Explanation of Relevant Service Information

Fokker Services B.V. has issued Fokker Service Bulletin F27/24-79, dated April 28, 1999, which describes procedures for repetitive inspections of the control panel of the DC generator for discrepancies (e.g., incorrect installation of DC generator system parts, including discrepant solder joints, discrepant wire insulation, and incorrect functioning relays and resistors). The service bulletin references Bendix (Allied Signal) publication R766-28, Technical Manual, Maintenance Instructions with Illustrated Parts Catalog for Generator Control Panel type no. 1539-11-B and 1539-12-B, paragraphs 2-12 through 2-15, as an additional source of service information for accomplishing the inspections and replacement of any discrepant part with a new part. 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 1999-093, dated June 30, 1999, to ensure the continued airworthiness of these airplanes in the Netherlands. Start Printed Page 44494

FAA's Conclusions

This airplane model is manufactured in the Netherlands and is type certificated for operation in the United States under the provisions of section 21.29 of the Federal Aviation Regulations (14 CFR 21.29) 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 this type design 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 design registered in the United States, the proposed AD would require accomplishment of the actions specified in the service bulletin described previously.

Cost Impact

The FAA estimates that 39 airplanes of U.S. registry would be affected by this proposed AD, that it would take approximately 4 work hours 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 $9,360, or $240 per inspection cycle.

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 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.

Changes to 14 CFR Part 39/Effect on the Proposed AD

On July 10, 2002, the FAA issued a new version of 14 CFR part 39 (67 FR 47997, July 22, 2002), which governs the FAA's airworthiness directives system. The regulation now includes material that relates to altered products, special flight permits, and alternative methods of compliance. Because we have now included this material in part 39, only the office authorized to approve AMOCs is identified in each individual AD.

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.

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List of Subjects in 14 CFR Part 39

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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:

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

Fokker Services B.V.: Docket 2002-NM-253-AD.

Applicability: All Model F27 Mark 100, 200, 300, 400, 500, 600, and 700 series airplanes; certificated in any category.

Compliance: Required as indicated, unless accomplished previously.

To prevent the loss of both direct current (DC) generator systems and loss of several other airplane systems, which could lead to the pilot's inability to maintain controlled flight, accomplish the following:

Initial and Repetitive Inspections

(a) Within 60 days after the effective date of this AD, do a detailed inspection of the control panel of the DC generator for discrepancies, per the Accomplishment Instructions of Fokker Service Bulletin F27/24-79, dated April 28, 1999. Repeat the inspection thereafter at intervals not to exceed 4,000 flight hours.

Note 1:

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.”

(b) If any discrepancy is found during any inspection required by paragraph (a) of this AD, prior to further flight, replace any discrepant part with a new part having the same part number, per the Accomplishment Instructions of Fokker Service Bulletin F27/24-79, dated April 28, 1999.

Note 2:

The service bulletin references Bendix (Allied Signal) publication R766-28, Technical Manual, Maintenance Instructions with Illustrated Parts Catalog for Generator Control Panel type no. 1539-11-B and 1539-12-B, paragraphs 2-12 through 2-15, as an additional source of service information for accomplishing the inspections and any parts replacement required by paragraphs (a) and (b) of this AD.

Alternative Methods of Compliance

(c) In accordance with 14 CFR 39.19, the Manager, International Branch, ANM-116, FAA, is authorized to approve alternative methods of compliance for this AD.

Note 3:

The subject of this AD is addressed in Dutch airworthiness directive 1999-093, dated June 30, 1999.

Start Signature

Issued in Renton, Washington, on July 22, 2003.

Ali Bahrami,

Acting Manager, Transport Airplane Directorate, Aircraft Certification Service.

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[FR Doc. 03-19195 Filed 7-28-03; 8:45 am]

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