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Airworthiness Directives; Saab AB, Saab Aerosystems Model 340A (SAAB/SF340A) and SAAB 340B 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:

Final rule.

SUMMARY:

We are adopting a new airworthiness directive (AD) for the products listed above. This AD results from mandatory continuing airworthiness information (MCAI) Start Printed Page 78957originated 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:

Several landing gear emergency extension valves have been found seized * * *. This condition, if not corrected, could result in malfunctioning of the landing gear release during an operational emergency.

* * * * *

This malfunction could cause failure of the landing gear to extend and lock in the extended position, which could result in a gear up landing and reduced controllability of the airplane on the ground. We are issuing this AD to require actions to correct the unsafe condition on these products.

DATES:

This AD becomes effective January 28, 2009.

The Director of the Federal Register approved the incorporation by reference of a certain publication listed in this AD as of January 28, 2009.

ADDRESSES:

You may examine the AD docket on the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov or in person at the U.S. Department of Transportation, Docket Operations, M-30, West Building Ground Floor, Room W12-140, 1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE., Washington, DC.

Start Further Info

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Shahram Daneshmandi, Aerospace Engineer, International Branch, ANM-116, Transport Airplane Directorate, FAA, 1601 Lind Avenue, SW., Renton, Washington 98057-3356; telephone (425) 227-1112; fax (425) 227-1149.

End Further Info End Preamble Start Supplemental Information

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Discussion

We issued a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) to amend 14 CFR part 39 to include an AD that would apply to the specified products. That NPRM was published in the Federal Register on September 30, 2008 (73 FR 56765). That NPRM proposed to correct an unsafe condition for the specified products. The MCAI states:

Several landing gear emergency extension valves have been found seized when performing checks according to the SAAB 340 Maintenance Review Board (MRB) Report, Section F (Airworthiness Limitation Section) task number 323106. The valves have seized due to lack of internal lubrication. This condition, if not corrected, could result in malfunctioning of the landing gear release during an operational emergency.

Because the valve lubrication performance is dependant on calendar time since last valve operation, SAAB has revised the check to cycle the emergency release handle 5 times and amended the interval in MRB section F from 5,000 FH [flight hours] to every 2 years.

For the reasons described above, this Airworthiness Directive (AD) requires a functional check [for discrepancies (e.g., landing gear does not extend, does not lock in down position)] of the landing gear emergency extension valve at the newly established intervals.

Malfunction of the landing gear release could cause failure of the landing gear to extend and lock in the extended position, which could result in a gear up landing and reduced controllability of the airplane on the ground. The corrective action for any discrepancy that is found is repair using a method approved by either the FAA or the European Aviation Safety Agency (or its delegated agent). You may obtain further information by examining the MCAI in the AD docket.

Comments

We gave the public the opportunity to participate in developing this AD. We received no comments on the NPRM or on the determination of the cost to the public.

Conclusion

We reviewed the available data and determined that air safety and the public interest require adopting the AD as proposed.

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 required different actions in this AD from those in the MCAI in order to follow our FAA policies. Any such differences are highlighted in a NOTE within the AD.

Costs of Compliance

We estimate that this AD will affect about 218 products of U.S. registry. We also estimate that it will take about 4 work-hours per product to comply with the basic requirements of this AD. The average labor rate is $80 per work-hour. Based on these figures, we estimate the cost of this AD to the U.S. operators to be $69,760, or $320 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 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 this AD:

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 AD and placed it in the AD docket.

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 the NPRM, 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 List of Subjects

List of Subjects in 14 CFR Part 39

End List of Subjects

Adoption of the Amendment

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

End Amendment Part Start Part

PART 39—AIRWORTHINESS DIRECTIVES

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1. The authority citation for part 39 continues to read as follows:

End Amendment Part Start Authority

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

End Authority
[Amended]
Start Amendment Part

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

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2008-26-08 Saab AB, Saab Aerosystems: Amendment 39-15774. Docket No. FAA-2008-1044; Directorate Identifier 2008-NM-095-AD.

Effective Date

(a) This airworthiness directive (AD) becomes effective January 28, 2009.

Affected ADs

(b) None.

Applicability

(c) This AD applies to Saab AB, Saab Aerosystems Model 340A (SAAB/SF340A) and SAAB 340B airplanes, all serial numbers, certificated in any category.

Subject

(d) Air Transport Association (ATA) of America Code 32: Landing Gear.

Reason

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

Several landing gear emergency extension valves have been found seized when performing checks according to the SAAB 340 Maintenance Review Board (MRB) Report, Section F (Airworthiness Limitation Section) task number 323106. The valves have seized due to lack of internal lubrication. This condition, if not corrected, could result in malfunctioning of the landing gear release during an operational emergency.

Because the valve lubrication performance is dependant on calendar time since last valve operation, SAAB has revised the check to cycle the emergency release handle 5 times and amended the interval in MRB section F from 5,000 FH [flight hours] to every 2 years.

For the reasons described above, this Airworthiness Directive (AD) requires a functional check [for discrepancies, (e.g., landing gear does not extend, does not lock in down position)] of the landing gear emergency extension valve at the newly established intervals.

Malfunction of the landing gear release could cause failure of the landing gear to extend and lock in the extended position, which could result in a gear up landing and reduced controllability of the airplane on the ground. The corrective action for any discrepancy that is found is repair using a method approved by either the FAA or the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) (or its delegated agent).

Actions and Compliance

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

(1) Within 6 months after the effective date of this AD, do a functional check of the landing gear emergency extension valve in accordance with the Accomplishment Instructions of SAAB Service Bulletin 340-32-136, dated January 9, 2008. Repeat the functional check thereafter at intervals not to exceed 24 months.

(2) If any discrepancy is found during any functional check required by paragraph (f)(1) of this AD, before further flight, repair using a method approved by either the Manager, International Branch, ANM-116, Transport Airplane Directorate, FAA; or the EASA (or its delegated agent).

FAA AD Differences

Note 1:

This AD differs from the MCAI and/or service information as follows: Although the MCAI includes a note that allows the option of the repetitive inspections (functional checks) to be accomplished in accordance with SAAB 340 Maintenance Review Board Report, Section F, Revision 6, Task Number 323106, this AD does not include that option. That document is not yet available.

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: Shahram Daneshmandi, Aerospace Engineer, International Branch, ANM-116, Transport Airplane Directorate, FAA, 1601 Lind Avenue SW., Renton, Washington 98057-3356; telephone (425) 227-1112; 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.

(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 EASA Airworthiness Directive 2008-0054, dated March 5, 2008; and SAAB Service Bulletin 340-32-136, dated January 9, 2008; for related information.

Material Incorporated by Reference

(i) You must use SAAB Service Bulletin 340-32-136, dated January 9, 2008, to do the actions required by this AD, unless the AD specifies otherwise.

(1) The Director of the Federal Register approved the incorporation by reference of this service information under 5 U.S.C. 552(a) and 1 CFR part 51.

(2) For service information identified in this AD, contact Saab Aircraft AB, SAAB Aerosystems, SE-581 88, Linkping, Sweden; telephone +46 13 18 5591; fax +46 13 18 4874; e-mail saab2000.techsupport@saabgroup.com; Internet http://www.saabgroup.com.

(3) You may review copies of the service information that is incorporated by reference at the FAA, Transport Airplane Directorate, 1601 Lind Avenue, SW., Renton, Washington. For information on the availability of this material at the FAA, call 425-227-1221 or 425-227-1152.

(4) You may also review copies of the service information at the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA). For information on the availability of this material at 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 December 12, 2008.

Michael J. Kaszycki,

Acting Manager, Transport Airplane Directorate, Aircraft Certification Service.

End Signature End Supplemental Information

[FR Doc. E8-30262 Filed 12-23-08; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 4910-13-P