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Proposed Rule

Airworthiness Directives; McDonnell Douglas Model 717-200 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 (FAA), Department of Transportation (DOT).

ACTION:

Notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM).

SUMMARY:

The FAA proposes to adopt a new airworthiness directive (AD) for certain McDonnell Douglas Model 717-200 airplanes. This proposed AD would require repetitively replacing and testing a certain relay of the passenger oxygen release system in the forward cabin. This proposed AD is prompted by reports of a failed relay of the passenger oxygen release system. We are proposing this AD to prevent failure of the relay, which could result in the oxygen masks failing to deploy and deliver oxygen to the passengers in the event of a rapid decompression or cabin depressurization.

DATES:

We must receive comments on this proposed AD by May 23, 2005.

ADDRESSES:

Use one of the following addresses to submit comments on this proposed AD.

  • DOT Docket Web site: Go to http://dms.dot.gov and follow the instructions for sending your comments electronically.
  • Government-wide rulemaking Web site: Go to http://www.regulations.gov and follow the instructions for sending your comments electronically.
  • Mail: Docket Management Facility, U.S. Department of Transportation, 400 Seventh Street SW., Nassif Building, room PL-401, Washington, DC 20590.
  • By fax: (202) 493-2251.
  • Hand Delivery: Room PL-401 on the plaza level of the Nassif Building, 400 Seventh Street, SW., Washington, DC, between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays.

For service information identified in this proposed AD, contact Boeing Commercial Airplanes, Long Beach Division, 3855 Lakewood Boulevard, Long Beach, California 90846, Attention: Data and Service Management, Dept. C1-L5A (D800-0024).

You can examine the contents of this AD docket on the Internet at http://dms.dot.gov, or in person at the Docket Management Facility, U.S. Department of Transportation, 400 Seventh Street, SW., room PL-401, on the plaza level of the Nassif Building, Washington, DC. This docket number is FAA-2005-20873; the directorate identifier for this docket is 2005-NM-026-AD.

Start Further Info

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Albert Lam, Aerospace Engineer, Cabin Safety and Environmental Systems Branch, ANM-150L, FAA, Los Angeles Aircraft Certification Office, 3960 Paramount Boulevard, Lakewood, California 90712-4137; telephone (562) 627-5346; fax (562) 627-5210.

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SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Comments Invited

We invite you to submit any relevant written data, views, or arguments regarding this proposed AD. Send your comments to an address listed under ADDRESSES. Include “Docket No. FAA-2005-20873; Directorate Identifier 2005-NM-026-AD” in the subject line of your comments. We specifically invite comments on the overall regulatory, economic, environmental, and energy aspects of the proposed AD. We will consider all comments submitted by the closing date and may amend the proposed AD in light of those comments.

We will post all comments we receive, without change, to http://dms.dot.gov, including any personal information you provide. We will also post a report summarizing each substantive verbal contact with FAA personnel concerning this proposed AD. Using the search function of that Web site, anyone can find and read the comments in any of our dockets, including the name of the individual who sent the comment (or signed the comment on behalf of an association, business, labor union, etc.). You can review DOT's complete Privacy Act Statement in the Federal Register published on April 11, 2000 (65 FR 19477-78), or you can visit http://dms.dot.gov.

Examining the Docket

You can examine the AD docket on the Internet at http://dms.dot.gov, or in person at the Docket Management Facility office between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. The Docket Management Facility office (telephone (800) 647-5227) is located on the plaza level of the Nassif Building at the DOT street address stated in the addresses section. Comments will be available in the AD docket shortly after the DMS receives them.

Discussion

We have received two reports indicating the detection of a failed relay of the passenger oxygen release system on certain McDonnell Douglas Model 717-200 airplanes. The failures were detected after a popped circuit breaker on the electrical power center was found during inspection. Investigation revealed that the failures were caused by an out-of-phase power transfer between two 115-volt alternating current power sources. This condition, if not corrected, could result in the oxygen masks failing to deploy and deliver oxygen to the passengers in the event of a rapid decompression or cabin depressurization.

Relevant Service Information

We have reviewed Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 717-35A0003, dated November 19, 2004. The service bulletin Start Printed Page 17354describes procedures for repetitively replacing a certain relay of the passenger oxygen release system in the forward cabin with a new relay, and repetitive operational tests of that relay. The subject relay, item number R2-5152, is located in the aft electrical power center at station Y=160.000.

FAA's Determination and Requirements of the Proposed AD

We have evaluated all pertinent information and identified an unsafe condition that is likely to exist or develop on other airplanes of this same type design. Therefore, we are proposing this AD, which would require accomplishing the actions specified in the service information described previously.

Interim Action

We consider this proposed AD interim action. The manufacturer is currently developing a modification that will address the unsafe condition identified in this AD. Once this modification is developed, approved, and available, we may consider additional rulemaking.

Costs of Compliance

There are about 122 airplanes of the affected design in the worldwide fleet. This proposed AD would affect about 92 airplanes of U.S. registry. The proposed replacement and test would take about 2 work hours per airplane, at an average labor rate of $65 per work hour. Required parts would be free of charge. Based on these figures, the estimated cost of the proposed replacement and test for U.S. operators is $11,960, or $130 per airplane, per cycle.

Authority for This Rulemaking

Title 49 of the United States Code specifies the FAA's authority to issue rules on aviation safety. Subtitle I, Section 106, describes the authority of the FAA Administrator, Subtitle VII, Aviation Programs, describes in more detail the scope of the Agency's authority.

We are issuing this rulemaking under the authority described in Subtitle VII, Part A, Subpart III, Section 44701, “General requirements.” Under that section, Congress charges the FAA with promoting safe flight of civil aircraft in air commerce by prescribing regulations for practices, methods, and procedures the Administrator finds necessary for safety in air commerce. This regulation is within the scope of that authority because it addresses an unsafe condition that is likely to exist or develop on products identified in this rulemaking action.

Regulatory Findings

We have determined that this proposed AD would not have federalism implications under Executive Order 13132. This proposed AD 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.

For the reasons discussed above, I certify that the 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. 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.

We prepared a regulatory evaluation of the estimated costs to comply with this proposed AD. See the ADDRESSES section for a location to examine the regulatory evaluation.

Start List of Subjects

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 FAA proposes to amend 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:

Start Authority

Authority: 49 U.S.C. 106(g), 401113, 44701.

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[Amended]

2. The FAA amends § 39.13 by adding the following new airworthiness directive (AD):

McDonnell Douglas: Docket No. FAA-2005-20873; Directorate Identifier 2005-NM-026-AD.

Comments Due Date

(a) The Federal Aviation Administrator (FAA) must receive comments on this AD action by May 23, 2005.

Affected ADs

(b) None.

Applicability

(c) This AD applies to McDonnell Douglas Model 717-200 airplanes, certificated in any category; as identified in Boeing Alert Service bulletin 717-35A0003, dated November 19, 2004.

Unsafe Condition

(d) This AD was prompted by reports of a failed reply of the passenger oxygen release system. We are issuing this AD to prevent failure of the relay, which could result in the oxygen masks failing to deploy and deliver oxygen to the passengers in the event of a rapid decompression or cabin depressurization.

Compliance

(e) You are responsible for having the actions required by this AD performed within the compliance times specified, unless the actions have already been done.

Repetitive Replacement and Test

(f) Replace the relay of the passenger oxygen release system in the forward cabin with a new relay and test for proper operation by doing all the actions as specified in Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 717-35A0003, dated November 19, 2004; at the applicable time specified in paragraph (f)(1) or (f)(2) of this AD. Repeat the actions at intervals not to exceed 3,100 flight cycles.

(1) For Group 1 airplanes, as identified in the service bulletin: Within 6 months after the effective date of this AD.

(2) For Group 2 airplanes, as identified in the service bulletin: Before the accumulation of 3,100 total flight cycles or within 6 months after the effective date of this AD, whichever is later.

Alternative Methods of Compliance (AMOCs)

(g) The Manager, Los Angeles Aircraft Certification Office, FAA, has the authority to approve AMOCs for this AD, if requested in accordance with the procedures found in 14 CFR 39.19.

Start Signature

Issued in Renton, Washington, on March 30, 2005.

Kalene C. Yanamura,

Acting Manager, Transport Airplane Directorate, Aircraft Certification Service.

End Signature End Part End Supplemental Information

[FR Doc. 05-6765 Filed 4-5-05; 8:45 am]

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