Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), Department of Transportation (DOT).
Notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM).
The FAA proposes to adopt a new airworthiness directive (AD) for certain Airbus Model A330, A340-200, and A340-300 airplanes. This proposed AD would require replacing the attachment landing assemblies of certain blow-down panels of the wing leading edges with new, improved landing assemblies. This proposed AD results from several reports of full or partial loss of certain blow-down panels of the wing leading edges during flight. We are proposing this AD to prevent damage to the airplane and hazards to persons or property on the ground.
We must receive comments on this proposed AD by June 19, 2006.Start Printed Page 28820
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.
- 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 Airbus, 1 Rond Point Maurice Bellonte, 31707 Blagnac Cedex, France, for service information identified in this proposed AD.Start Further Info
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:
Tim Backman, Aerospace Engineer, International Branch, ANM-116, FAA, Transport Airplane Directorate, 1601 Lind Avenue, SW., Renton, Washington 98055-4056; telephone (425) 227-2797; fax (425) 227-1149.End Further Info End Preamble Start Supplemental Information
We invite you to submit any relevant written data, views, or arguments regarding this proposed AD. Send your comments to an address listed in the ADDRESSES section. Include the docket number “FAA-2006-24793; Directorate Identifier 2006-NM-056-AD” at the beginning 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 received 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 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 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 Docket Management System receives them.
The European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) notified us that an unsafe condition may exist on certain Airbus A330, A340-200, and A340-300 airplanes. The EASA advises that several operators have reported full or partial loss of certain blow-down panels of the wing leading edges during flight. Analysis showed that wing vibration resulted in wear formation of the rivet slots or complete shearing of the attaching rivets of the blow-down panel landings. This condition, if not corrected, could result in damage to the airplane and hazards to persons or property on the ground.
Relevant Service Information
Airbus has issued Service Bulletins A330-57-3091; and A340-57-4100; both dated October 25, 2005. The service bulletins describe procedures for replacing the attachment landing assemblies of certain blow-down panels of the wing leading edges with new, improved landing assemblies. Accomplishing the actions specified in the service information is intended to adequately address the unsafe condition. The EASA mandated the service information and issued the EASA airworthiness directive 2006-0048, dated February 16, 2006, to ensure the continued airworthiness of these airplanes in the European Union.
FAA's Determination and Requirements of the Proposed AD
These airplane models are manufactured in France 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 FAA Order 8100.14A, “Interim Procedures for Working with the European Community on Airworthiness Certification and Continued Airworthiness,” dated August 12, 2005, the EASA has kept the FAA informed of the situation described above. We have examined the EASA's findings, evaluated all pertinent information, and determined that we need to issue an AD for products of this type design that are certificated for operation in the United States.
Therefore, we are proposing this AD, which would require accomplishing the actions specified in the service information described previously.
Costs of Compliance
The following table provides the estimated costs for U.S. operators of Model A330 airplanes to comply with the modifications required by this proposed AD. The estimated labor rate is $80 per work hour.
|Airplane group||Work hours||Parts||Cost per airplane||Number of U.S.-registered airplanes||Fleet cost|
|1, 2, 3, 4, 5||68||$25,120||$30,560||5 (group 2 only)||$152,800|
Currently, there are no Model A340-200 or A340-300 airplanes on the U.S. Register. However, if an affected Model A340-200 or A340-300 airplane is imported and placed on the U.S. Register in the future, the estimated costs shown in the table above will apply to accomplish the required actions of this proposed AD for that airplane.
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, Start Printed Page 28821Aviation 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.
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 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 39End List of Subjects
The Proposed Amendment
Accordingly, under the authority delegated to me by the Administrator, the FAA proposes to amend 14 CFR part 39 as follows:Start Part
PART 39—AIRWORTHINESS DIRECTIVES
1. The authority citation for part 39 continues to read as follows:
2. The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) amends § 39.13 by adding the following new airworthiness directive (AD):
Airbus: Docket No. FAA-2006-24793; Directorate Identifier 2006-NM-056-AD.
Comments Due Date
(a) The FAA must receive comments on this AD action by June 19, 2006.
(c) This AD applies to Airbus A330, A340-200, and A340-300 airplanes, certificated in any category; all serial numbers; except for airplanes which have received both Airbus modification 47249 and Airbus modification 53383 in production.
(d) This AD results from several reports of full or partial loss of certain blow-down panels of the wing leading edges during flight. We are issuing this AD to prevent damage to the airplane and hazards to persons or property on the ground.
(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.
(f) Within 56 months after the effective date of this AD, replace the landing assemblies of certain blow-down panels of the wing leading edges with new, improved landing assemblies; in accordance with the Accomplishment Instructions of Airbus Service Bulletin A330-57-3091; or Airbus Service Bulletin A340-57-4100; both dated October 25, 2005; as applicable.
Alternative Methods of Compliance (AMOCs)
(g)(1) The Manager, International Branch, ANM-116, Transport Airplane Directorate, 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 § 39.19 on any airplane to which the AMOC applies, notify the appropriate principal inspector in the FAA Flight Standards Certificate Holding District Office.
(h) The European Aviation Safety Agency airworthiness directive 2006-0048, dated February 16, 2006, also addresses the subject of this AD.
Issued in Renton, Washington, on May 9, 2006.
Manager, Transport Airplane Directorate, Aircraft Certification Service.
[FR Doc. E6-7560 Filed 5-17-06; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4910-13-P