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Airworthiness Directives; Boeing Model 767-200, -300, and -300F Series Airplanes

Document Details

Information about this document as published in the Federal Register.

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Start Preamble

AGENCY:

Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), Department of Transportation (DOT).

ACTION:

Final rule; request for comments.

SUMMARY:

The FAA is revising an existing airworthiness directive (AD) that applies to all Boeing Model 767-200, -300, and -300F series airplanes. The existing AD currently requires inspections to detect cracking or corrosion of the fail-safe straps between the side fitting of the rear spar bulkhead at body station 955 and the skin; and follow-on/corrective actions. The existing AD results from reports of cracked and/or corroded fail-safe straps at body station (BS) 955 on Boeing Model 767-200 series airplanes. We issued the existing AD to detect and correct fatigue cracking or corrosion of the fail-safe straps, which could result in cracking of adjacent structure and consequent reduced structural integrity of the fuselage. This new AD revises the applicability of the existing AD to reduce the number of affected airplanes. We are issuing this AD to detect and correct fatigue cracking or corrosion of the fail-safe straps, which could result in cracking of adjacent structure and consequent reduced structural integrity of the fuselage.

DATES:

The effective date of this AD is November 1, 2004.

On November 1, 2004 (69 FR 57636, September 27, 2004), the Director of the Federal Register approved the incorporation by reference of Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 767-53A0100, dated September 26, 2002.

We must receive comments on this AD by December 5, 2005.

ADDRESSES:

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

Contact Boeing Commercial Airplanes, P.O. Box 3707, Seattle, Washington 98124-2207, for service information identified in this AD.

Start Further Info

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Candice Gerretsen, Aerospace Engineer, Airframe Branch, ANM-120S, FAA, Seattle Aircraft Certification Office, 1601 Lind Avenue, SW., Renton, Washington 98055-4056; telephone (425) 917-6428; fax (425) 917-6590.

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SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Discussion

On September 13, 2004, we issued AD 2004-19-06, amendment 39-13800 (69 FR 57636, September 27, 2004). That AD applies to all Boeing Model 767-200, -300, and -300F series airplanes. That AD requires inspections to detect cracking or corrosion of the fail-safe straps between the side fitting of the rear spar bulkhead at body station (BS) 955 and the skin; and follow-on/corrective actions. That AD resulted from reports of cracked and/or corroded fail-safe straps at BS 955 on Boeing Model 767-200 series airplanes. The actions specified in that AD are intended to detect and correct fatigue cracking or corrosion of the fail-safe straps, which could result in cracking of adjacent structure and consequent reduced structural integrity of the fuselage.

Actions Since AD Was Issued

Since we issued that AD, the manufacturer, Boeing, developed a production change that lowers the maximum stress in the fail-safe strap and removes the critical location where cracks were occurring on Boeing Model 767-200, -300, and -300F series airplanes. The production change is applicable to airplanes having line numbers 932 and subsequent. Therefore, we have revised the applicability of AD 2004-19-06 to Boeing Model 767-200, -300, and -300F series airplanes, line numbers 1 through 931 inclusive.

FAA's Determination and Requirements of This AD

The unsafe condition described previously is likely to exist or develop on other airplanes of the same type design that may be registered in the U.S. at some time in the future. For this reason, we are issuing this AD to detect and correct fatigue cracking or corrosion of the fail-safe straps, which could result in cracking of adjacent structure and consequent reduced structural integrity of the fuselage. This AD continues to require inspections to detect cracking or corrosion of the fail-safe straps between the side fitting of the rear spar bulkhead at body station 955 and the skin; and follow-on/corrective actions. This AD also revises the applicability of the existing AD to exclude line numbers 932 and subsequent.

Explanation of Change Made to This AD

Boeing Commercial Airplanes has received a Delegation Option Authorization (DOA). We have revised this AD to delegate the authority to approve an alternative method of Start Printed Page 58001compliance for any repair required by this AD to an Authorized Representative for the Boeing Commercial Airplanes DOA rather than a Designated Engineering Representative (DER).

Clarification of Alternative Method of Compliance (AMOC) Paragraph

We have revised this AD to clarify the appropriate procedure for notifying the principal inspector before using any approved AMOC on any airplane to which the AMOC applies.

Interim Action

This is considered to be interim action until final action is identified, at which time we may consider further rulemaking.

Costs of Compliance

There are approximately 833 airplanes of the affected design in the worldwide fleet. We estimate that 354 airplanes of U.S. registry will be affected by this AD, that it will take approximately 2 work hours per airplane to accomplish the required inspections, and that the average labor rate is $65 per work hour. Based on these figures, the cost impact of the AD on U.S. operators is estimated to be $46,020, or $130 per airplane, per inspection cycle.

FAA's Determination of the Effective Date

On April 18, 2005, the Seattle Aircraft Certification Office granted an alternative method of compliance (AMOC) with the requirements of AD 2004-19-06 for airplanes having line numbers 932 and subsequent. That AMOC terminates the requirements of AD 2004-19-06 for those airplanes. This AD clarifies that the applicability of AD 2004-19-06 is only for airplanes having line numbers 1 through 931 inclusive. Therefore, providing notice and opportunity for public comment is unnecessary before this AD is issued, and this AD may be made effective in less than 30 days after it is published in the Federal Register.

Comments Invited

This AD is a final rule that involves requirements that affect flight safety and was not preceded by notice and an opportunity for public comment; however, we invite you to submit any relevant written data, views, or arguments regarding this AD. Send your comments to the address listed under the ADDRESSES section. Include “Docket No. FAA-2005-22584; Directorate Identifier 2005-NM-044-AD” at the beginning of your comments. We specifically invite comments on the overall regulatory, economic, environmental, and energy aspects of the AD that might suggest a need to modify it.

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 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 may review the DOT's complete Privacy Act Statement in the Federal Register published on April 11, 2000 (65 FR 19477-78), or you may visit http://dms.dot.gov.

Examining the Docket

You may examine the AD docket on the Internet at http://dms.dot.gov, or in person at the Docket Management Facility office between 9:00 a.m. and 5:00 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 Docket Management System receives them.

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 AD will not have federalism implications under Executive Order 13132. This AD 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.

For the reasons discussed above, I certify that this AD:

(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) 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 AD and placed it in the AD docket. 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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Adoption of the Amendment

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Accordingly, under the authority delegated to me by the Administrator, the FAA amends

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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. The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) amends § 39.13 by removing amendment 39-13800 (

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2004-19-06 R1 Boeing: Amendment 39-14313. Docket No. FAA-2005-22584; Directorate Identifier 2005-NM-044-AD.

Effective Date

(a) The effective date of this AD is November 1, 2004.

Affected ADs

(b) This AD revises AD 2004-19-06.

Applicability

(c) This AD applies to Boeing Model 767-200, -300, and -300F series airplanes, certificated in any category; line numbers 1 through 931 inclusive.

Unsafe Condition

(d) This AD results from reports of cracked and/or corroded fail-safe straps at body station (BS) 955 on Boeing Model 767-200 series airplanes. We are issuing this AD to detect and correct fatigue cracking or corrosion of the fail-safe straps, which could Start Printed Page 58002result in cracking of adjacent structure and consequent reduced structural integrity of the fuselage.

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.

Inspections and Follow-On/Corrective Actions

(f) Except as provided by paragraph (g) of this AD, prior to the accumulation of 15,000 total flight cycles, or within 3,000 flight cycles after November 1, 2004 (the effective date of AD 2004-19-06), whichever occurs later, perform a detailed inspection and eddy current inspection to detect cracking or corrosion of the fail-safe straps between the side fitting of the rear spar bulkhead at BS 955 and the skin, per Figure 2 of the Accomplishment Instructions of Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 767-53A0100, dated September 26, 2002.

Note 1:

For the purposes of this AD, a detailed inspection is: “An intensive examination of a specific item, installation, or assembly to detect damage, failure, or irregularity. Available lighting is normally supplemented with a direct source of good lighting at an intensity deemed appropriate. Inspection aids such as mirror, magnifying lenses, etc., may be necessary. Surface cleaning and elaborate procedures may be required.”

(1) If no crack or corrosion is found, repeat the inspections thereafter at intervals not to exceed 6,000 flight cycles or 36 months, whichever occurs first.

(2) If any crack or corrosion is found, before further flight, repair per a method approved by the Manager, Seattle Aircraft Certification Office (ACO), FAA; or using a method approved in accordance with paragraph (h)(2) of this AD.

(g) For airplanes on which the fail-safe strap has been replaced before November 1, 2004: Do the actions required by paragraph (f) of this AD within 12,000 flight cycles after accomplishing the replacement.

Note 2:

Steps 2 and 8 of the Work Instructions of Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 767-53A0100, dated September 26, 2002, refer incorrectly to 767 Airplane Maintenance Manual (AMM) 32-00-20 for opening the MLG doors; the correct reference is 767 AMM 32-00-15, which is referred to in steps 3 and 7 of the Work Instructions. Step 2 also should state “Open Main Landing Gear (MLG) doors” instead of “Open Main Landing Green (MLG) doors.”

Alternative Methods of Compliance (AMOCs)

(h)(1) The Manager, Seattle ACO, FAA, has the authority to approve AMOCs for this AD, if requested in accordance with the procedures found in 14 CFR 39.19.

(2) Before using any AMOC approved in accordance with 14 CFR 39.19 on any airplane to which the AMOC applies, notify the appropriate principal inspector in the FAA Flight Standards Certificate Holding District Office.

(3) An AMOC that provides an acceptable level of safety may be used for any repair required by this AD, if it is approved by an Authorized Representative for the Boeing Commercial Airplanes Delegation Option Authorization Organization who has been authorized by the Manager, Seattle ACO, to make those findings. For a repair method to be approved, the repair must meet the certification basis of the airplane.

Material Incorporated by Reference

(i) You must use Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 767-53A0100, dated September 26, 2002, to perform the actions that are required by this AD, unless the AD specifies otherwise. On November 1, 2004 (69 FR 57636, September 27, 2004), the Director of the Federal Register approved the incorporation by reference of this document. Contact Boeing Commercial Airplanes, P.O. Box 3707, Seattle, Washington 98124-2207, for a copy of this service information. You may review copies at the Docket Management Facility, U.S. Department of Transportation, 400 Seventh Street SW., room PL-401, Nassif Building, Washington, DC; on the Internet at http://dms.dot.gov; or at the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA). For information on the availability of this material at the NARA, call (202) 741-6030, or go to http://www.archives.gov/​federal_​register/​code_​of_​federal_​regulations/​ibr_​locations.html.

Start Signature

Issued in Renton, Washington, on September 26, 2005.

Ali Bahrami,

Manager, Transport Airplane Directorate, Aircraft Certification Service.

End Signature End Supplemental Information

[FR Doc. 05-19939 Filed 10-4-05; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 4910-13-P