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Airworthiness Directives; Airbus Model A300 B4-600, B4-600R, and F4-600R Series Airplanes, and Model C4-605R Variant F Airplanes (Collectively Called A300-600 Series 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.

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AGENCY:

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

ACTION:

Final rule; request for comments.

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SUMMARY:

We are adopting a new airworthiness directive (AD) for the products listed above. This 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:

During a routine maintenance check on an A300-600 aeroplane, the operator found the pitch uncoupling unit installed at an incorrect location. The pitch uncoupling unit was inverted with the rod assembly.

After a complete inspection of all A300-600 aeroplanes of its fleet, the operator identified the same incorrect installation on another aeroplane.

* * * * *

This condition, if not detected and corrected, in combination with particular failure modes, could lead to loss of control of the aeroplane during the takeoff phase.

* * * * *

This AD requires actions that are intended to address the unsafe condition described in the MCAI.

DATES:

This AD becomes effective January 20, 2011.

The Director of the Federal Register approved the incorporation by reference of a certain publication listed in the AD as of January 20, 2011.

We must receive comments on this AD by February 22, 2011.

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 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.

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FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Dan Rodina, Aerospace Engineer, International Branch, ANM-116, Transport Airplane Directorate, FAA, 1601 Lind Avenue, SW., Renton, Washington 98057-3356; telephone (425) 227-2125; fax (425) 227-1149.

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SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Discussion

The European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA), which is the Technical Agent for the Member States of the European Community, has issued EASA Emergency Airworthiness Directive 2010-0239-E, dated November 19, 2010 [Corrected November 23, 2010] (referred to after this as “the MCAI”), to correct an unsafe condition for the specified products. The MCAI states:

During a routine maintenance check on an A300-600 aeroplane, the operator found the pitch uncoupling unit installed at an incorrect location. The pitch uncoupling unit was inverted with the rod assembly.

After a complete inspection of all A300-600 aeroplanes of its fleet, the operator identified the same incorrect installation on another aeroplane.

Had this routine maintenance check, which was accomplished for other purposes, not been carried out, the incorrect installation could only have been detected during the accomplishment of the pitch uncoupling functional test.

Note:

Another maintenance task, the pitch uncoupling operational test, scheduled at intervals not to exceed 2,000 FH or 36 months, whichever occurs first (MPD task 273100-01-1), only validates the condition of the pitch uncoupling solenoid.

This condition, if not detected and corrected, in combination with particular failure modes, could lead to loss of control of the aeroplane during the takeoff phase.

For the reason described above, this AD requires a one time visual inspection, to detect any incorrect installation of the pitch uncoupling unit,and, depending on findings, to take corrective actions.

This [EASA] AD was republished to correct the compliance time.

Corrective actions include removing and re-installing the pitch uncoupling unit and rod assembly at the correction location and doing a functional test to verify correct operation. You may obtain further information by examining the MCAI in the AD docket.

Relevant Service Information

Airbus has issued A300-600 All Operators Telex 27A6068, Revision 01, dated November 18, 2010. 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 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 issuing this AD because we evaluated all pertinent information and determined the unsafe condition exists and is likely to exist or develop on other products of the same type design.

Differences Between the 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 FAA policies. Any such differences are highlighted in a Note within the AD.

FAA's Determination of the Effective Date

An unsafe condition exists that requires the immediate adoption of this AD. The FAA has found that the risk to the flying public justifies waiving notice and comment prior to adoption of this rule because a pitch uncoupling unit was found to be installed at an incorrect location. The pitch uncoupling unit was inverted with the rod assembly. This condition, if not detected and corrected, in combination with other failure modes, could lead to loss of control of the airplane during the take-off phase. Therefore, we determined that notice and opportunity for public comment before issuing this AD are impracticable and that good cause exists for making this amendment effective in fewer than 30 days.

Comments Invited

This AD is a final rule that involves requirements affecting flight safety, and we did not precede it by notice and opportunity for public comment. We invite you to send any written relevant data, views, or arguments about this AD. Send your comments to an address listed under the ADDRESSES section. Include “Docket No. FAA-2010-1278; Directorate Identifier 2010-NM-260-Start Printed Page 443AD” at the beginning of your comments. We specifically invite comments on the overall regulatory, economic, environmental, and energy aspects of this AD. We will consider all comments received by the closing date and may amend this 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 AD.

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.

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

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2011-01-13 Airbus: Amendment 39-16567. Docket No. FAA-2010-1278; Directorate Identifier 2010-NM-260-AD.

Effective Date

(a) This airworthiness directive (AD) becomes effective January 20, 2011.

Affected ADs

(b) None.

Applicability

(c) This AD applies to Airbus Model A300 B4-601, B4-603, B4-620, B4-622, B4-605R, B4-622R, F4-605R, F4-622R, and C4-605R Variant F airplanes, certificated in any category, all serial numbers, except for airplanes on which the pitch uncoupling functional test has already been performed in service since new.

Note 1:

The pitch uncoupling functional test is described in Section 3.D.(2) of task 27-31-00, Page Block 501 of Airbus A300-600 Aircraft Maintenance Manual (AMM) [Maintenance Planning Document (MPD) task 273100-02-1].

Subject

(d) Air Transport Association (ATA) of America Code 27: Flight Controls.

Reason

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

During a routine maintenance check on an A300-600 aeroplane, the operator found the pitch uncoupling unit installed at an incorrect location. The pitch uncoupling unit was inverted with the rod assembly.

After a complete inspection of all A300-600 aeroplanes of its fleet, the operator identified the same incorrect installation on another aeroplane.

* * * * *

This condition, if not detected and corrected, in combination with particular failure modes, could lead to loss of control of the aeroplane during the takeoff phase.

* * * * *

Compliance

(f) You are responsible for having the actions required by this AD performed within the compliance times specified, unless the actions have already been done.

Inspection, Re-Installation, and Functional Test

(g) Within 30 days after the effective date of this AD, do a general visual inspection for correct location of the pitch uncoupling unit, in accordance with paragraph 4.2 of Airbus A300-600 All Operators Telex (AOT) 27A6068, Revision 01, dated November 18, 2010. If the pitch uncoupling unit is found inverted with the rod assembly, before further flight, remove and re-install the uncoupling unit and the rod assembly at their correct locations and do a functional test of the pitch uncoupling unit to verify correct operation, in accordance with paragraph 4.2 of Airbus A300-600 AOT 27A6068, Revision 01, dated November 18, 2010.

FAA AD Differences

Note 2:

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

Other FAA AD Provisions

(h) 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: Dan Rodina, Aerospace Engineer, International Branch, ANM-116, Transport Airplane Directorate, FAA, 1601 Lind Avenue, SW., Renton, Washington 98057-3356; telephone (425) 227-2125; fax (425) 227-1149. Information may be e-mailed to: 9-ANM-116-AMOC-REQUESTS@faa.gov. 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. The AMOC approval letter must specifically reference this AD.

(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: A federal agency may not conduct or sponsor, and a person is not required to respond to, nor shall a person be subject to a penalty for failure to comply with a collection of information subject to the requirements of the Paperwork Reduction Act unless that collection of information displays a current valid OMB Control Number. The OMB Control Number for this information collection is 2120-0056. Public reporting for this collection of information is estimated to Start Printed Page 444be approximately 5 minutes per response, including the time for reviewing instructions, completing and reviewing the collection of information. All responses to this collection of information are mandatory. Comments concerning the accuracy of this burden and suggestions for reducing the burden should be directed to the FAA at: 800 Independence Ave., SW., Washington, DC 20591, Attn: Information Collection Clearance Officer, AES-200.

Related Information

(i) Refer to MCAI European Aviation Safety Agency Emergency Airworthiness Directive 2010-0239-E, dated November 19, 2010 [Corrected November 23, 2010]; and Airbus A300-600 AOT 27A6068, Revision 01, dated November 18, 2010; for related information.

Material Incorporated by Reference

(j) You must use Airbus A300-600 All Operators Telex 27A6068, Revision 01, dated November 18, 2010, 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 Airbus SAS—EAW (Airworthiness Office), 1 Rond Point Maurice Bellonte, 31707 Blagnac Cedex, France; telephone +33 5 61 93 36 96; fax +33 5 61 93 44 51; e-mail: account.airworth-eas@airbus.com; Internet http://www.airbus.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.

(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.

Start Signature

Issued in Renton, Washington, on December 22, 2010.

Jeffrey E. Duven,

Acting Manager, Transport Airplane Directorate, Aircraft Certification Service.

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[FR Doc. 2010-32995 Filed 1-4-11; 8:45 am]

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