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Proposed Rule

Airworthiness Directives; Bell Helicopter Textron Canada Limited Models 206A, 206B, 206L, 206L-1, 206L-3, and 206L-4 Helicopters

Document Details

Information about this document as published in the Federal Register.

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Start Preamble

AGENCY:

Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), Department of Transportation (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:

It has been determined that new tail rotor disc assembly Part Number (P/N) 101584-1 or -2, sold through Bell Helicopter Spares beginning March 2009, as an alternate to P/N 32721-1, does not conform to the approved configuration. Operating a helicopter with disk assembly P/N 101584-1 or -2 installed may result in loss of control of the helicopter.

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 October 14, 2010.

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 W12-140, 1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE., Washington, DC 20590, 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 Management Facility 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 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:

Sharon Miles, Aerospace Engineer, FAA, Rotorcraft Directorate, 2601 Meacham Blvd., Fort Worth, Texas 76137; telephone: (817) 222-5122; fax: (817) 222-5961.

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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-2010-0865; Directorate Identifier 2010-SW-061-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 because of 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

Transport Canada, which is the aviation authority for Canada, has issued AD No. CF-2010-07, dated February 24, 2010 (referred to after this as “the MCAI”), to correct an unsafe condition for the specified products. The MCAI states:

It has been determined that new tail rotor disc assembly Part Number (P/N) 101584-1 or -2, sold through Bell Helicopter Spares Start Printed Page 52915beginning March 2009, as an alternate to P/N 32721-1, does not conform to the approved configuration. Operating a helicopter with disk assembly P/N 101584-1 or -2 installed may result in loss of control of the helicopter.

This directive mandates the removal from service tail rotor disc assembly P/N 101584-1 and -2.

You may obtain further information by examining the MCAI in the AD docket.

Relevant Service Information

Bell Helicopter has issued Alert Service Bulletin No. 206-09-123, REV A, dated June 10, 2009, and Alert Service Bulletin No. 206L-09-157, REV A, dated June 10, 2009. The actions described in this service information are intended to correct the unsafe condition identified in the MCAI.

FAA's Determination and Requirements of the 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 this State of Design Authority, they have notified us of the unsafe condition described in the MCAI and service information referenced above. We are proposing this AD because we evaluated all information and determined the unsafe condition exists and is likely to exist or develop on other products of the same type design.

Differences Between This Proposed 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

We estimate that this proposed AD will affect 2,847 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 $85 per work-hour. Required parts would cost about $260 per product.

Based on these figures, we estimate the cost of the proposed AD on U.S. operators to be $982,215 or $345 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:

Bell Helicopter Textron Canada Limited: Docket No. FAA-2010-0865; Directorate Identifier 2010-SW-061-AD.

Comments Due Date

(a) We must receive comments by October 14, 2010.

Affected ADs

(b) None.

Applicability

(c) This AD applies to the following model and serial number airplanes, certificated in any category.

ModelSerial No. (S/N)
206A004 through 660 and 672 through 715.
206BAll S/Ns including those converted from Model 206A.
206L45004 through 45153 and 46601 through 46617.
206L-145154 through 45790.
206L-351001 through 51612.
206L-4All S/Ns.

Subject

(d) Air Transport Association of America (ATA) Code 65: Tail Rotor Drive.

Reason

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

It has been determined that new tail rotor disc assembly Part Number (P/N) 101584-1 or -2, sold through Bell Helicopter Spares beginning March 2009, as an alternate to P/N 32721-1, does not conform to the approved configuration. Operating a helicopter with disk assembly P/N 101584-1 or -2 installed may result in loss of control of the helicopter.

This directive mandates the removal from service tail rotor disc assembly P/N 101584-1 and -2.

Actions and Compliance

(f) Unless already done, do the following actions following Bell Helicopter Alert Service Bulletin No. 206-09-123, REV A, dated June 10, 2009; and Bell Helicopter Alert Service Bulletin No. 206L-09-157, REV A, dated June 10, 2009, as applicable.

(1) Check the helicopter maintenance records to determine if a disc assembly, part number (P/N) 101584-1 or -2, is installed. Do this check within the next 30 days after the effective date of this AD or within the next 100 hours time-in-service (TIS) after the effective date of this AD, whichever occurs first.

(2) If, during the maintenance records check required in paragraph (f)(1) of this AD, Start Printed Page 52916you cannot positively determine that a P/N 101584-1 or -2 disc assembly is not installed, within the next 30 days after the effective date of this AD or within the next 100 hours TIS after the effective date of this AD, whichever occurs first, inspect the tail rotor driveshaft system to determine if P/N 101584-1 or -2 is installed.

(3) If, during the maintenance records check required in paragraph (f)(1) of this AD or during the inspection required in paragraph (f)(2) of this AD, you can positively determine that a P/N 101584-1 or -2 disc assembly is not installed, no further action is required. Before further flight, make an entry in the log book showing compliance with this AD.

(4) If, during the maintenance records check required in paragraph (f)(1) of this AD or during the inspection required in paragraph (f)(2) of this AD, you can positively determine that a P/N 101584-1 or -2 disc assembly is installed, within the next 30 days after the effective date of this AD or within the next 100 hours TIS after the effective date of this AD, whichever occurs first, replace disc assembly P/N 101584-1 or -2 with disc assembly P/N 32721-1.

(5) As of the effective date of this AD, do not install disc assembly P/N 101584-1 or -2.

FAA AD Differences

Note:

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, Standards Office, 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: Sharon Miles, Aerospace Engineer, FAA, Rotorcraft Directorate, 2601 Meacham Blvd., Fort Worth, Texas 76137; telephone: (817) 222-5122; fax: (817) 222-5961. 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 (44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq.), 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 Transport Canada, AD No. CF-2010-07, dated February 24, 2010; Bell Helicopter Alert Service Bulletin No. 206-09-123, REV A, dated June 10, 2009; and Bell Helicopter Alert Service Bulletin No. 206L-09-157, REV A, dated June 10, 2009, for related information.

Start Signature

Issued in Fort Worth, Texas, on August 19, 2010.

Mark R. Schilling,

Acting Manager, Rotorcraft Directorate, Aircraft Certification Service.

End Signature End Part End Supplemental Information

[FR Doc. 2010-21589 Filed 8-27-10; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 4910-13-P