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Proposed Rule

Airworthiness Directives; PILATUS Aircraft Ltd. Airplanes

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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 all PILATUS Aircraft Ltd. Model PC-7 airplanes. 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 a need to incorporate new revisions into the Limitations section of the FAA-approved maintenance program (e.g., maintenance manual). The limitations were revised to include an emergency fuel control system adjustment test. We are issuing this proposed AD to require actions to address the unsafe condition on these products.

DATES:

We must receive comments on this proposed AD by June 10, 2013.

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.

For service information identified in this proposed AD, contact PILATUS AIRCRAFT LTD., Customer Technical Support (MCC), P.O. Box 992, CH-6371 STANS, Switzerland; telephone: +41 (0)41 619 67 74; fax: +41 (0)41 619 67 73; Internet: http://www.pilatus-aircraft.com or email: Techsupport@pilatus-aircraft.com. You may review copies of the referenced service information at the FAA, Small Airplane Directorate, 901 Locust, Kansas City, Missouri 64106. For information on the availability of this material at the FAA, call (816) 329-4148.

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.

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FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Doug Rudolph, Aerospace Engineer, FAA, Small Airplane Directorate, 901 Locust, Room 301, Kansas City, Missouri 64106; telephone: (816) 329-4059; fax: (816) 329-4090; email: doug.rudolph@faa.gov.

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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-2013-0383; Directorate Identifier 2013-CE-008-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://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 Federal Office of Civil Aviation (FOCA), which is the aviation authority for Switzerland, has issued AD HB-2013-003, dated March 19, 2013 (referred to after this as “the MCAI”), to correct an unsafe condition for the specified products. The MCAI states:

This Airworthiness Directive (AD) is prompted by changes to the Airworthiness Limitations Section (ALS) of the Aircraft Maintenance Manual (AMM), which adds life-limits, revises life-limits or adds inspections not previously identified.

These documents include the maintenance instructions and/or airworthiness limitations developed by Pilatus Aircraft Ltd. and approved by FOCA. Failure to comply with these instructions and limitations could potentially lead to unsafe condition.

Pilatus Aircraft Ltd. published Pilatus PC-7 AMM report no. 01715 revision 31 dated 30 November 2012 to incorporate a 300 Flight Hour (FH) hour inspection on the Emergency Fuel Control System (FCS).

For the reason described above, this AD requires the implementation and the compliance with this new maintenance requirement.

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

Relevant Service Information

PILATUS Aircraft Ltd. has issued PILATUS PC-7 Maintenance Manual, Time Limited Inspection Requirements, 05-10-20, pages 1 through 6, dated November 30, 2012; and PILATUS PC-7 Maintenance Manual, Emergency Fuel Control System—Adjustment/Test, 76-20-00, pages 501 and 502, dated November 30, 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 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 Start Printed Page 24690referenced 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.

Costs of Compliance

We estimate that this proposed AD will affect 15 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 $10 per product.

Based on these figures, we estimate the cost of the proposed AD on U.S. operators to be $1,425, or $95 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),

(3) Will not affect intrastate aviation in Alaska, and

(4) 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.

Start List of Subjects

List of Subjects in 14 CFR Part 39

  • Air transportation
  • Aircraft
  • Aviation safety
  • Incorporation by reference
  • Safety
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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

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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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PILATUS Aircraft Ltd.: Docket No. FAA-2013-0383; Directorate Identifier 2013-CE-008-AD.

(a) Comments Due Date

We must receive comments by June 10, 2013.

(b) Affected ADs

None.

(c) Applicability

This AD applies to PILATUS Aircraft Ltd. Model PC-7 airplanes, all serial numbers, certificated in any category.

(d) Subject

Air Transport Association of America (ATA) Code 76: Engine Controls.

(e) Reason

This AD was prompted by 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 a need to incorporate new revisions into the Limitations section of the FAA-approved maintenance program (e.g., maintenance manual). The limitations were revised to include an emergency fuel control system adjustment test. We are issuing this AD to ensure the continued operational safety of the affected airplanes.

(f) Actions and Compliance

Unless already done, do the following actions as specified in paragraphs (f)(1) and (f)(2) of this AD:

(1) Within the next 90 days after the effective date of this AD and repetitively thereafter at intervals not to exceed 300 hours time-in-service, do the emergency fuel control system test following the Functional Test Procedures in PILATUS PC-7 Maintenance Manual, Emergency Fuel Control System—Adjustment/Test, 76-20-00, pages 501 and 502, dated November 30, 2010, as specified in PILATUS PC-7 Maintenance Manual, Time Limited Inspection Requirements, 05-10-20, dated November 30, 2012.

Note to paragraph (f)(1) of this AD:

Only page 4, Chapter 76—Engine Controls, of PILATUS PC-7 Maintenance Manual, Time Limited Inspection Requirements, 05-10-20, dated November 30, 2012, which was revised to add PILATUS PC-7 Maintenance Manual, Emergency Fuel Control System—Adjustment/Test, 76-20-00, dated November 30, 2010, is being mandated in this AD. Other Chapters referenced in this document are covered in other ADs.

(2) As a result of the functional test required in paragraph (f)(1) of this AD, if a discrepancy is found that is not identified in the document listed in paragraph (f)(1) of this AD, before further flight after finding the discrepancy, contact Pilatus Aircraft Ltd. at the address specified in paragraph (h) of this AD for a repair scheme and incorporate that repair scheme.

(g) Other FAA AD Provisions

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: Doug Rudolph, Aerospace Engineer, FAA, Small Airplane Directorate, 901 Locust, Room 301, Kansas City, Missouri 64106; telephone: (816) 329-4059; fax: (816) 329-4090; email: doug.rudolph@faa.gov. 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, 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 be 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.Start Printed Page 24691

(h) Related Information

Refer to Federal Office of Civil Aviation (FOCA) AD HB-2013-003, dated March 19, 2013; PILATUS PC-7 Maintenance Manual, Time Limited Inspection Requirements, 50-10-20, pages 1 through 6, dated November 30, 2012; and PILATUS PC-7 Maintenance Manual, Emergency Fuel Control System—Adjustment/Test, 76-20-00, pages 501 and 502, dated November 30, 2010, for related information. For service information related to this AD, contact PILATUS AIRCRAFT LTD., Customer Technical Support (MCC), P.O. Box 992, CH-6371 STANS, Switzerland; telephone: +41 (0)41 619 67 74; fax: +41 (0)41 619 67 73; Internet: http://www.pilatus-aircraft.com or email: Techsupport@pilatus-aircraft.com. You may review copies of the referenced service information at the FAA, Small Airplane Directorate, 901 Locust, Kansas City, Missouri 64106. For information on the availability of this material at the FAA, call (816) 329-4148.

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Issued in Kansas City, Missouri, on April 19, 2013.

Earl Lawrence,

Manager, Small Airplane Directorate, Aircraft Certification Service.

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[FR Doc. 2013-09888 Filed 4-25-13; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 4910-13-P