Skip to Content

Proposed Rule

Airworthiness Directives; BAE Systems (Operations) Limited Model BAe 146 and Avro 146-RJ 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), 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:

There have been a number of incidents where wing-to-fuselage or MLG [main landing gear] door fairing panels have detached from the aircraft during flight. Subsequent inspection revealed the loss of the fairing panels to be due to failure of certain steel grommets * * *. A detaching panel could strike the aircraft during flight, causing damage. In addition, a detaching panel could become attached to the structure or control surfaces, resulting in reduced control of the aircraft.

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 June 1, 2009.

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., Start Printed Page 19906Washington, DC, between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays.

For service information identified in this proposed AD, contact BAE Systems Regional Aircraft, 13850 McLearen Road, Herndon, Virginia 20171; telephone 703-736-1080; e-mail raebusiness@baesystems.com; Internet http://www.baesystems.com/​Businesses/​RegionalAircraft/​index.htm. You may review copies of the referenced service information 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.

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:

Todd Thompson, Aerospace Engineer, International Branch, ANM-116, Transport Airplane Directorate, FAA, 1601 Lind Avenue, SW., Renton, Washington 98057-3356; telephone (425) 227-1175; fax (425) 227-1149.

End Further Info End Preamble Start Supplemental Information

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-2009-0398; Directorate Identifier 2008-NM-193-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 European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA), which is the Technical Agent for the Member States of the European Community, has issued EASA Airworthiness Directive 2008-0180, dated September 30, 2008 (referred to after this as “the MCAI”), to correct an unsafe condition for the specified products. The MCAI states:

There have been a number of incidents where wing-to-fuselage or MLG [main landing gear] door fairing panels have detached from the aircraft during flight. Subsequent inspection revealed the loss of the fairing panels to be due to failure of certain steel grommets, (P/N) [part number] SL5183 and HC535H0312, through which the attachment bolts are inserted. These failures may have been caused by improper installation of the grommets or damage resulting from maintenance procedures relating to paint stripping and repainting, allowing air loads to pull the panel through the grommet. A detaching panel could strike the aircraft during flight, causing damage. In addition, a detaching panel could become attached to the structure or control surfaces, resulting in reduced control of the aircraft.

Following the application of BAE Systems (Operations) Ltd ISB 53-202 at Revision 1 to the first few, it has been discovered that removal of existing grommets P/N SL5183 and HC535H0312 may result in localised damage to the aluminum foil membrane attached to the inner surface of some fairing panels. BAE Systems (Operations) Ltd has therefore issued additional instructions in All Operators Message (AOM) 08-015V, including bonding checks and detailed procedures for applying an electro-conductive paste at each SL5185 grommet location in order to bridge any gap between grommet and the inner aluminum foil. The next revision of BAE Systems (Operations) Ltd ISB 53-202 will include the technical content of AOM 08-015V.

For the reasons described above, this EASA AD requires repetitive inspections of the wing-to-fuselage & MLG door fairing panel grommets and, when damage is detected, the accomplishment of corrective actions.

Corrective actions include replacing damaged grommets with new P/N SL5185 grommets; or doing a temporary repair, which delays the replacement. You may obtain further information by examining the MCAI in the AD docket.

Relevant Service Information

BAE Systems (Operations) Limited has issued Inspection Service Bulletin ISB.53-202, Revision 3, dated December 10, 2008. The actions described in the 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 affect about 1 product of U.S. registry. We also estimate that it would take about 14 work hours 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 $1,120.

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.Start Printed Page 19907

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

End 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:

Start Authority

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

End Authority
[Amended]

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

BAE Systems (Operations) Limited (Formerly British Aerospace Regional Aircraft): Docket No. FAA-2009-0398; Directorate Identifier 2008-NM-193-AD.

Comments Due Date

(a) We must receive comments by June 1, 2009.

Affected ADs

(b) None.

Applicability

(c) This AD applies to BAE Systems (Operations) Limited Model BAe 146-100A, -200A, and -300A series airplanes; and Model Avro 146-RJ70A, 146-RJ85A, and 146-RJ100A airplanes; certificated in any category, all models, all serial numbers, that have embodied modification HCM00633E or HCM00934A.

Subject

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

Reason

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

There have been a number of incidents where wing-to-fuselage or MLG [main landing gear] door fairing panels have detached from the aircraft during flight. Subsequent inspection revealed the loss of the fairing panels to be due to failure of certain steel grommets, (P/N) [part number] SL5183 and HC535H0312, through which the attachment bolts are inserted. These failures may have been caused by improper installation of the grommets or damage resulting from maintenance procedures relating to paint stripping and repainting, allowing air loads to pull the panel through the grommet. A detaching panel could strike the aircraft during flight, causing damage. In addition, a detaching panel could become attached to the structure or control surfaces, resulting in reduced control of the aircraft.

Following the application of BAE Systems (Operations) Ltd ISB 53-202 at Revision 1 to the first few, it has been discovered that removal of existing grommets P/N SL5183 and HC535H0312 may result in localised damage to the aluminum foil membrane attached to the inner surface of some fairing panels. BAE Systems (Operations) Ltd has therefore issued additional instructions in All Operators Message (AOM) 08-015V, including bonding checks and detailed procedures for applying an electro-conductive paste at each SL5185 grommet location in order to bridge any gap between grommet and the inner aluminum foil. The next revision of BAE Systems (Operations) Ltd ISB 53-202 will include the technical content of AOM 08-015V.

For the reasons described above, this EASA AD requires repetitive inspections of the wing-to-fuselage & MLG door fairing panel grommets and, when damage is detected, the accomplishment of corrective actions.

Corrective actions include replacing damaged grommets with new P/N SL5185 grommets; or doing a temporary repair, which delays the replacement.

Actions and Compliance

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

(1) Within 4,000 flight cycles or 24 months after the effective date of this AD, whichever occurs later, and thereafter at intervals not to exceed 8,000 flight cycles, conduct a visual inspection of the steel grommets on the fairing panels in accordance with paragraph 2.C. of BAE Systems (Operations) Limited Inspection Service Bulletin ISB.53-202, Revision 3, dated December 10, 2008.

(2) If damage is found during any inspection required by paragraph (f)(1) of this AD, before further flight, do the actions specified in paragraph (f)(2)(i) or (f)(2)(ii) of this AD.

(i) Replace the grommets with new P/N SL5185 grommets in accordance with paragraph 2.C. of BAE Systems (Operations) Limited Inspection Service Bulletin ISB.53-202, Revision 3, dated December 10, 2008, and concurrently conduct a bonding inspection at each grommet location in accordance with paragraph 2.C. of BAE Systems (Operations) Limited Inspection Service Bulletin ISB.53-202, Revision 3, dated December 10, 2008. If unsatisfactory bonding is detected, before further flight, apply electro-conductive paste in accordance with Appendix 4 of BAE Systems (Operations) Limited Inspection Service Bulletin ISB.53-202, Revision 3, dated December 10, 2008.

(ii) Do a temporary repair in accordance with Appendix 3 of the BAE Systems (Operations) Limited Inspection Service Bulletin ISB.53-202, Revision 3, dated December 10, 2008, or an approved BAE Systems (Operations) Limited temporary repair scheme.

(3) For airplanes on which a temporary repair specified in paragraph (f)(2)(ii) of this AD has been done: Within 8,000 flight cycles after doing the temporary repair, replace any temporary repair grommets with new P/N SL5185 grommets in accordance with paragraph 2.C. of BAE Systems (Operations) Limited Inspection Service Bulletin ISB.53-202, Revision 3, dated December 10, 2008, and concurrently conduct a bonding inspection at each grommet location in accordance with paragraph 2.C. of BAE Systems (Operations) Limited Inspection Service Bulletin ISB.53-202, Revision 3, dated December 10, 2008. If unsatisfactory bonding is detected, before further flight, apply electro-conductive paste in accordance with Appendix 4 of BAE Systems (Operations) Limited Inspection Service Bulletin ISB.53-202, Revision 3, dated December 10, 2008.

(4) For airplanes on which any new P/N SL5185 grommets have been installed without having a bonding inspection prior to the effective date of this AD: Before or during the next scheduled repetitive inspection in accordance with paragraph (f)(1) of this AD, conduct a bonding inspection in accordance with paragraph 2.C of BAE Systems (Operations) Limited Inspection Service Bulletin ISB.53-202, Revision 3, dated December 10, 2008. If unsatisfactory bonding is detected, before further flight, apply electro-conductive paste in accordance with Appendix 4 of BAE Systems (Operations) Limited Inspection Service Bulletin ISB.53-202, Revision 3, dated December 10, 2008.

(5) Replacement of all existing grommets with new P/N SL5185 grommets on all panels, including the corresponding bonding inspections and the application of the electro-conductive paste as applicable, in accordance with BAE Systems (Operations) Limited Inspection Service Bulletin ISB.53-202, Revision 3, dated December 10, 2008, terminates the repetitive inspections required by paragraph (f)(1) of this AD.

(6) Visual inspections, temporary repairs, and replacements of the grommets are also acceptable for compliance with the corresponding requirements of paragraphs (f)(1), (f)(2)(i), (f)(2)(ii), (f)(3), and (f)(5) of this AD if done before the effective date of this AD in accordance with BAE Systems (Operations) Limited Inspection Service Bulletin ISB.53-202, Revision 1, dated June 4, 2008.Start Printed Page 19908

(7) Visual inspections, temporary repairs, replacements of the grommets, bonding inspections, and applications of conductive paste are also acceptable for compliance with the corresponding requirements of paragraphs (f)(1), (f)(2)(i), (f)(3), (f)(4), and (f)(5) of this AD if done before the effective date of this AD in accordance with BAE Systems (Operations) Limited Inspection Service Bulletin ISB.53-202, Revision 2, dated October 24, 2008.

(8) Bonding inspections and applications of conductive paste are also acceptable for compliance with the corresponding requirement of paragraphs (f)(2)(i), (f)(3), (f)(4), and (f)(5) of this AD if done before the effective date of this AD in accordance with BAE Systems (Operations) Limited All Operator Message 08-015V, Issue 1, dated August 22, 2008.

FAA AD Differences

Note 1:

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: Todd Thompson, Aerospace Engineer, International Branch, ANM-116, Transport Airplane Directorate, FAA, 1601 Lind Avenue, SW., Renton, Washington 98057-3356; telephone (425) 227-1175; fax (425) 227-1149. Before using any approved AMOC on any airplane to which the AMOC applies, notify your principal maintenance inspector (PMI) or principal avionics inspector (PAI), as appropriate, or lacking a principal inspector, your local Flight Standards District Office.

(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 ensure 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 European Aviation Safety Agency Airworthiness Directive 2008-0180, dated September 30, 2008; and BAE Systems (Operations) Limited Inspection Service Bulletin ISB.53-202, Revision 3, dated December 10, 2008; for related information.

Start Signature

Issued in Renton, Washington, on April 22, 2009.

Stephen P. Boyd,

Acting Manager, Transport Airplane Directorate, Aircraft Certification Service.

End Signature End Part End Supplemental Information

[FR Doc. E9-9865 Filed 4-29-09; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 4910-13-P