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Proposed Rule

Airworthiness Directives; Empresa Brasileira de Aeronautica S.A. (EMBRAER) Model EMB-145, -145ER, -145MR, -145LR, -145XR, -145MP, and -145EP Airplanes

Document Details

Information about this document as published in the Federal Register.

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AGENCY:

Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT.

ACTION:

Notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM).

SUMMARY:

We propose to adopt a new airworthiness directive (AD) for the products listed above. This proposed AD results from mandatory continuing airworthiness information (MCAI) originated by an aviation authority of another country to identify and correct an unsafe condition on an aviation product. The MCAI describes the unsafe condition as:

Embraer has issued the Service Bulletin (SB) No. 145-00-0032 to provide instructions to modify the EMB-145 ( ) aircraft and allow operation with an increased Maximum Takeoff Weight (MTOW). Reassessment of the Damage Tolerance Analysis during development of the SB resulted in changes to the Airworthiness Limitation Items (ALI) for those modified aircraft to include new tasks and to revise some existing ones and its respective intervals.

Failure to inspect some structural components, according to the new tasks and intervals for those modified aircraft, could prevent a timely detection of fatigue cracking. Undetected fatigue cracking in these components could adversely affect the structural integrity of these airplanes.

* * * * *

The proposed AD would require actions that are intended to address the unsafe condition described in the MCAI.

DATES:

We must receive comments on this proposed AD by April 14, 2008.

ADDRESSES:

You may send comments by any of the following methods:

  • Federal eRulemaking Portal: Go to http://www.regulations.gov. Follow the instructions for submitting comments.
  • Fax: (202) 493-2251.
  • Mail: U.S. Department of Transportation, Docket Operations, M-30, West Building Ground Floor, Room W12-140, 1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE., Washington, DC 20590.
  • Hand Delivery: U.S. Department of Transportation, Docket Operations, M-30, West Building Ground Floor, Room W12-40, 1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE., Washington, DC, between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays.

Examining the AD Docket

You may examine the AD docket on the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov;​ or in person at the Docket Operations office between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. The AD docket contains this proposed AD, the regulatory evaluation, any comments received, and other information. The street address for the Docket Operations office (telephone (800) 647-5527) is in the ADDRESSES section. Comments will be available in the AD docket shortly after receipt.

Start Further Info

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Sanjay Ralhan, Aerospace Engineer, International Branch, ANM-116, Transport Airplane Directorate, FAA, 1601 Lind Avenue, SW., Renton, Washington 98057-3356; telephone (425) 227-1405; fax (425) 227-1149.

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SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Comments Invited

We invite you to send any written relevant data, views, or arguments about this proposed AD. Send your comments to an address listed under the ADDRESSES section. Include “Docket No. FAA-2008-0271; Directorate Identifier 2007-NM-267-AD” at the beginning of your comments. We specifically invite comments on the overall regulatory, economic, environmental, and energy aspects of this proposed AD. We will consider all comments received by the closing date and may amend this proposed AD based on those comments.

We will post all comments we receive, without change, to http://www.regulations.gov, including any personal information you provide. We will also post a report summarizing each substantive verbal contact we receive about this proposed AD.

Discussion

The Agência Nacional de Aviação Civil (ANAC), which is the aviation authority for Brazil, has issued Brazilian Airworthiness Directive 2007-07-01, effective August 21, 2007 (referred to after this as “the MCAI”), to correct an unsafe condition for the specified products. The MCAI states:

Embraer has issued the Service Bulletin (SB) No. 145-00-0032 to provide instructions to modify the EMB-145 ( ) aircraft and allow operation with an increased Maximum Takeoff Weight (MTOW). Reassessment of the Damage Tolerance Analysis during development of the SB resulted in changes to the Airworthiness Limitation Items (ALI) for those modified aircraft to include new tasks and to revise some existing ones and its respective intervals.

Failure to inspect some structural components, according to the new tasks and intervals for those modified aircraft, could prevent a timely detection of fatigue cracking. Undetected fatigue cracking in these components could adversely affect the structural integrity of these airplanes.

* * * * *

The corrective action is revising the Airworthiness Limitations Section Structural Inspection Requirements and Corrosion Prevention and Control Program Section of the Instructions for Continued Airworthiness to incorporate new structural inspection requirements. You may obtain further information by examining the MCAI in the AD docket.

Relevant Service Information

EMBRAER has issued Temporary Revision (TR) 10-5, dated May 23, 2007, to the EMBRAER EMB145 Maintenance Review Board (MRB) Report MRB-145/1150. The actions described in this service information are intended to correct the unsafe condition identified in the MCAI.

FAA's Determination and Requirements of This Proposed AD

This product has been approved by the aviation authority of another country, and is approved for operation in the United States. Pursuant to our bilateral agreement with the State of Design Authority, we have been notified of the unsafe condition described in the MCAI and service information referenced above. We are proposing this AD because we evaluated all pertinent information and determined an unsafe condition exists and is likely to exist or develop on other products of the same type design.

Differences Between This AD and the MCAI or Service Information

We have reviewed the MCAI and related service information and, in general, agree with their substance. But we might have found it necessary to use different words from those in the MCAI to ensure the AD is clear for U.S. operators and is enforceable. In making these changes, we do not intend to differ substantively from the information provided in the MCAI and related service information.

We might also have proposed different actions in this AD from those in the MCAI in order to follow FAA policies. Any such differences are highlighted in a NOTE within the proposed AD.

Costs of Compliance

Based on the service information, we estimate that this proposed AD would Start Printed Page 13502affect about 572 products of U.S. registry. We also estimate that it would take about 1 work-hour per product to comply with the basic requirements of this proposed AD. The average labor rate is $80 per work-hour. Based on these figures, we estimate the cost of the proposed AD on U.S. operators to be $45,760, or $80 per product.

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 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 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. 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.

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:

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

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[Amended]

2. The FAA amends § 39.13 by adding the following new AD:

Empresa Brasileira De Aeronautica S.A. (Embraer): Docket No. FAA-2008-0271; Directorate Identifier 2007-NM-267-AD.

Comments Due Date

(a) We must receive comments by April 14, 2008.

Affected ADs

(b) None.

Applicability

(c) This AD applies to EMBRAER Model EMB-145, -145ER, -145MR, -145LR, -145XR, -145MP, and -145EP airplanes, certificated in any category, which have incorporated EMBRAER Service Bulletin 145-00-0032.

Note 1:

This AD requires revisions to certain operator maintenance documents to include new inspections. Compliance with these inspections is required by 14 CFR 91.403(c). For airplanes that have been previously modified, altered, or repaired in the areas addressed by these inspections, the operator may not be able to accomplish the inspections described in the revisions. In this situation, to comply with 14 CFR 91.403(c), the operator must request approval for an alternative method of compliance according to paragraph (g)(1) of this AD. The request should include a description of changes to the required inspections that will ensure the continued operational safety of the airplane.

Subject

(d) Air Transport Association (ATA) of America Code 53: Fuselage.

Reason

(e) The mandatory continuing airworthiness information (MCAI) states:

Embraer has issued the Service Bulletin (SB) No. 145-00-0032 to provide instructions to modify the EMB-145 ( ) aircraft and allow operation with an increased Maximum Takeoff Weight (MTOW). Reassessment of the Damage Tolerance Analysis during development of the SB resulted in changes to the Airworthiness Limitation Items (ALI) for those modified aircraft to include new tasks and to revise some existing ones and its respective intervals.

Failure to inspect some structural components, according to the new tasks and intervals for those modified aircraft, could prevent a timely detection of fatigue cracking. Undetected fatigue cracking in these components could adversely affect the structural integrity of these airplanes.

* * * * *

The corrective action is revising the Airworthiness Limitations Section Structural Inspection Requirements and Corrosion Prevention and Control Program Section of the Instructions for Continued Airworthiness to incorporate new structural inspection requirements.

Actions and Compliance

(f) Unless already done, do the following actions.

(1) Within 60 days after the effective date of this AD: Revise the Airworthiness Limitations Section (ALS) Structural Inspection Requirements and Corrosion Prevention and Control Program Section of the Instructions for Continued Airworthiness to incorporate the tasks specified in Appendix 2, Airworthiness Limitation Requirements, Section 4—Structural Inspection Requirements, and Section 5—Corrosion Prevention and Control Program, identified in Temporary Revision (TR) 10-5, dated May 23, 2007, to the EMBRAER EMB 145 Maintenance Review Board (MRB) Report MRB-145/1150.

Note 2:

The actions required by paragraph (f)(1) of this AD may be done by inserting a copy of TR 10-5 into the sections. When this TR has been included in general revisions of the MRB report, the general revisions may be inserted in the MRB report, provided the relevant information in the general revision is identical to that in TR 10-5.

(2) After accomplishing the actions specified in paragraph (f)(1) of this AD, no alternative inspections or inspection intervals may be used, except as provided by paragraph (g)(1) of this AD.

FAA AD Differences

Note 3:

This AD differs from the MCAI and/or service information as follows: No differences.

Other FAA AD Provisions

(g) The following provisions also apply to this AD:

(1) Alternative Methods of Compliance (AMOCs): The Manager, International Branch, ANM-116, Transport Airplane Directorate, FAA, has the authority to approve AMOCs for this AD, if requested using the procedures found in 14 CFR 39.19. Send information to ATTN: Sanjay Ralhan, Aerospace Engineer, 1601 Lind Avenue, SW., Renton, Washington 98057-3356; telephone (425) 227-1405; fax (425) 227-1149. Before using any approved AMOC on any airplane to which the AMOC applies, notify your appropriate principal inspector (PI) in the FAA Flight Standards District Office (FSDO), or lacking a PI, your local FSDO.

(2) Airworthy Product: For any requirement in this AD to obtain corrective actions from a manufacturer or other source, use these actions if they are FAA-approved. Corrective actions are considered FAA-approved if they are approved by the State of Design Authority (or their delegated agent). You are required to assure the product is airworthy before it is returned to service. Start Printed Page 13503

(3) Reporting Requirements: For any reporting requirement in this AD, under the provisions of the Paperwork Reduction Act, the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) has approved the information collection requirements and has assigned OMB Control Number 2120-0056.

Related Information

(h) Refer to MCAI Agência Nacional de Aviação Civil Airworthiness Directive 2007-07-01, effective August 21, 2007, and EMBRAER TR 10-5, dated May 23, 2007, to the EMBRAER EMB145 MRB Report MRB-145/1150, for related information.

Start Signature

Issued in Renton, Washington, on March 3, 2008.

Ali Bahrami,

Manager, Transport Airplane Directorate, Aircraft Certification Service.

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[FR Doc. E8-4995 Filed 3-12-08; 8:45 am]

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