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Airworthiness Directives; Boeing Model 767 Airplanes

Document Details

Information about this document as published in the Federal Register.

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AGENCY:

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

ACTION:

Final rule.

SUMMARY:

The FAA is adopting a new airworthiness directive (AD) for certain Boeing Model 767 airplanes. This AD requires sealing certain fasteners and stiffeners in the fuel tank, changing certain wire bundle clamp configurations on the fuel tank walls, inspecting certain fasteners in the fuel tanks and to determine the method of attachment of the vortex generators, and corrective action if necessary. This AD results from fuel system reviews conducted by the manufacturer. We are issuing this AD to prevent possible ignition sources in the auxiliary fuel tank, main fuel tanks, and surge tanks caused by a wiring short or lightning strike, which could result in fuel tank Start Printed Page 43622explosions and consequent loss of the airplane.

DATES:

This AD becomes effective October 1, 2009.

The Director of the Federal Register approved the incorporation by reference of certain publications listed in the AD as of October 1, 2009.

ADDRESSES:

For service information identified in this AD, contact Boeing Commercial Airplanes, Attention: Data & Services Management, P.O. Box 3707, MC 2H-65, Seattle, Washington 98124-2207; telephone 206-544-5000, extension 1; fax 206-766-5680; e-mail me.boecom@boeing.com; Internet https://www.myboeingfleet.com.

Examining the AD Docket

You may examine the AD docket on the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov;​ or in person at the Docket Management Facility between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. The AD docket contains this AD, the regulatory evaluation, any comments received, and other information. The address for the Docket Office (telephone 800-647-5527) is the Document Management Facility, U.S. Department of Transportation, Docket Operations, M-30, West Building Ground Floor, Room W12-140, 1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE., Washington, DC 20590.

Start Further Info

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Douglas Bryant, Aerospace Engineer, Propulsion Branch, ANM-140S, FAA, Seattle Aircraft Certification Office, 1601 Lind Avenue, SW., Renton, Washington 98057-3356; telephone (425) 917-6505; fax (425) 917-6590.

End Further Info End Preamble Start Supplemental Information

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Discussion

The FAA issued a supplemental notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) to amend 14 CFR part 39 to include an AD that would apply to certain Boeing Model 767 airplanes. That supplemental NPRM was published in the Federal Register on October 16, 2008 (73 FR 61378). That supplemental NPRM proposed to require sealing certain fasteners and stiffeners in the fuel tank, changing certain wire bundle clamp configurations on the fuel tank walls, inspecting additional fasteners in the fuel tanks and to determine the method of attachment of the vortex generators, and corrective action if necessary.

Comments

We provided the public the opportunity to participate in the development of this AD. We have considered the comments received on the supplemental NPRM.

Support for the NPRM

Boeing concurs with the contents of the NPRM.

Request for Final Rule To Include Reference to Supplemental Type Certificate (STC) ST01920SE

Delta requests that the final rule include a reference to STC ST01920SE, dated October 15, 2008, which installs winglets on certain Boeing 767 airplanes that have similar fastener sealing requirements in coincidental locations defined in the proposed AD. Delta states that including the specific common areas of the referenced STC in the final rule would simplify compliance if the STC has already been incorporated, and also preclude de-modification if the STC is incorporated after the AD.

We partially agree with the commenter's statement. The requirements for fasteners that penetrate the fuel tank are the same in both the STC and AD. We disagree with referencing the STC in the AD because there is insufficient information contained in the request to identify the specific areas that are common between the STC and AD. However, the commenter may formally request an approval for an alternative method of compliance, as provided by paragraph (h) of this AD, if the request includes more specific information to enable us to determine whether the proposed method would provide an adequate level of safety.

Conclusion

We have carefully reviewed the available data, including the comments received, and determined that air safety and the public interest require adopting the AD as proposed in the supplemental NPRM.

Costs of Compliance

There are about 925 airplanes of the affected design in the worldwide fleet. The following table provides the estimated costs for U.S. operators to comply with this AD. There are no U.S.-registered airplanes in Group 3 of Boeing Service Bulletin 767-57A0102. The average labor rate is $80 per work hour.

Estimated Costs

Boeing Service BulletinGroupWork hoursPartsCost per airplaneNumber of U.S.-registered airplanesFleet cost
767-57A010016minimal$480341$163,680
2114minimal9,12021191,520
31none80171,360
767-57A010212461,63221,3123417,267,392
28741,30471,224211,495,704
3243382,25800

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 Start Printed Page 43623responsibilities 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]
Start Amendment Part

2. The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) amends § 39.13 by adding the following new airworthiness directive (AD):

End Amendment Part

2009-18-02 Boeing: Amendment 39-15998. Docket No. FAA-2007-28035; Directorate Identifier 2006-NM-293-AD.

Effective Date

(a) This AD becomes effective October 1, 2009.

Affected ADs

(b) None.

Applicability

(c) This AD applies to Model 767-200, -300, -300F, and -400ER series airplanes; certificated in any category; as identified in Boeing Service Bulletin 767-57A0100, Revision 1, dated June 19, 2008; and Boeing Service Bulletin 767-57A0102, Revision 1, dated November 27, 2007.

Unsafe Condition

(d) This AD results from fuel system reviews conducted by the manufacturer. We are issuing this AD to prevent possible ignition sources in the auxiliary fuel tank, main fuel tanks, and surge tanks caused by a wiring short or lightning strike, which could result in fuel tank explosions and consequent loss of the airplane.

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.

Fastener Sealant Application

(f) For airplanes identified in Boeing Service Bulletin 767-57A0100, Revision 1, dated June 19, 2008: Within 60 months after the effective date of this AD, do the actions in paragraphs (f)(1) and (f)(2) of this AD in accordance with the Accomplishment Instructions of Boeing Service Bulletin 767-57A0100, Revision 1, dated June 19, 2008, as applicable.

(1) For Groups 1 and 2 airplanes: Seal the ends of the fasteners on the brackets that hold the vortex generators, and seal the ends of the fasteners on certain stiffeners on the rear spar, as applicable.

(2) For Group 3 airplanes: Do a detailed inspection to determine the method of attachment of the vortex generators and, before further flight, do all applicable specified corrective actions.

Wire Bundle Sleeve and Clamp Installation and Fastener Sealant Application

(g) For airplanes identified in Boeing Service Bulletin 767-57A0102, Revision 1, dated November 27, 2007: Within 60 months after the effective date of this AD, do the actions specified in paragraphs (g)(1), (g)(2), and (g)(3) of this AD, as applicable, in accordance with the Accomplishment Instructions of Boeing Service Bulletin 767-57A0102, Revision 1, dated November 27, 2007.

(1) Change the wire bundle clamp configurations at specified locations on the fuel tank walls.

(2) Seal the fasteners and certain stiffeners at specified locations in the fuel tank.

(3) Do a detailed inspection of the sealant of the fasteners in the auxiliary tank center bay and rib 28 of the left and right main fuel tanks. Seal any unsealed fasteners before further flight.

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.”

Alternative Methods of Compliance (AMOCs)

(h)(1) The Manager, Seattle Aircraft Certification Office (ACO), FAA, has the authority to approve AMOCs for this AD, if requested in accordance with the procedures found in 14 CFR 39.19. Send information to ATTN: Douglas Bryant, Aerospace Engineer, Propulsion Branch, ANM-140S, FAA, Seattle Aircraft Certification Office, 1601 Lind Avenue, SW., Renton, Washington 98057-3356; telephone (425) 917-6505; fax (425) 917-6590.

(2) To request a different method of compliance or a different compliance time for this AD, follow the procedures in 14 CFR 39.19. 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.

Material Incorporated by Reference

(i) You must use the service information contained in Table 1 of this AD to do the actions required by this AD, unless the AD specifies otherwise.

Table 1—Material Incorporated By Reference

DocumentRevisionDate
Boeing Service Bulletin 767-57A010201November 27, 2007.
Boeing Service Bulletin 767-57A010001June 19, 2008.

(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 Boeing Commercial Airplanes, Attention: Data & Services Management, P.O. Box 3707, MC 2H-65, Seattle, Washington 98124-2207; telephone 206-544-5000, extension 1; fax 206-766-5680; e-mail me.boecom@boeing.com; Internet https://www.myboeingfleet.com.

(3) You may review copies of the 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.

(4) You may also review copies of the service information that is incorporated by reference 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.

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Start Printed Page 43624

Issued in Renton, Washington, on August 7, 2009.

Stephen P. Boyd,

Acting Manager, Transport Airplane Directorate, Aircraft Certification Service.

End Signature End Supplemental Information

[FR Doc. E9-20274 Filed 8-26-09; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 4910-13-P