Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT.
Notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM).
We propose to adopt a new airworthiness directive (AD) for certain The Boeing Company Model 737-300, -400, and -500 series airplanes. This proposed AD was prompted by a report of fatigue cracking found in a certain fuselage frame common to the water tank support intercostal clip located between certain stringers. This proposed AD would require inspections for any cracking of a certain fuselage frame, and repair if necessary. We are proposing this AD to address the unsafe condition on these products.
We must receive comments on this proposed AD by May 8, 2017.
You may send comments, using the procedures found in 14 CFR 11.43 and 11.45, by any of the following methods:
Federal eRulemaking Portal: Go to http://www.regulations.gov. Follow the instructions for submitting comments.
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: Deliver to Mail address above between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays.
For service information identified in this NPRM, contact Boeing Commercial Airplanes, Attention: Contractual & Data Services (C&DS), 2600 Westminster Blvd., MC 110-SK57, Seal Beach, CA 90740-5600; telephone 562-797-1717; Internet https://www.myboeingfleet.com. You may view this referenced service information at the FAA, Transport Airplane Directorate, 1601 Lind Avenue SW., Renton, WA. For information on the availability of this material at the FAA, call 425-227-1221. It is also available on the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov by searching for and locating Docket No. FAA-2017-0131.
Examining the AD Docket
You may examine the AD docket on the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov by searching for and locating Docket No. FAA-2017-0131; 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 (phone: 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:
Galib Abumeri, Aerospace Engineer, Airframe Branch, ANM-120L, FAA, Los Angeles Aircraft Certification Office (ACO), 3960 Paramount Boulevard, Lakewood, CA 90712-4137; phone: 562-627-5324; fax: 562-627-5210; email: email@example.com.
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We invite you to send any written relevant data, views, or arguments about this proposal. Send your comments to an address listed under the ADDRESSES section. Include “Docket No. FAA-2017-0131; Directorate Identifier 2016-NM-186-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.
We have received a report of fatigue cracking found in a certain fuselage frame, Station (STA) 947.5 on the right side, common to the water tank support intercostal clip located between certain stringers, S-24R and S-25R. Ten cracks were reported on airplanes having line Start Printed Page 14836numbers 2566 through 3132. Those airplanes had accumulated between 39,400 and 51,745 total flight cycles. The reported cracks were between 0.184 and 1.125 inch long. These cracks were found to be caused by fatigue caused by cyclic loading of the fuselage, and out-of-plane bending of the frame caused by the water tank loads. Fatigue cracking, if not corrected, could grow in size and result in a severed frame. Multiple adjacent severed frames would result in reduced structural integrity of the airplane.
Related Service Information Under 1 CFR Part 51
We reviewed Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 737-53A1357, dated August 9, 2016. The service information describes procedures for inspections for any cracking of a certain fuselage frame, and repair if necessary. This service information is reasonably available because the interested parties have access to it through their normal course of business or by the means identified in the ADDRESSES section.
We are proposing this AD because we evaluated all the relevant information and determined the unsafe condition described previously is likely to exist or develop in other products of the same type design.
Proposed AD Requirements
This proposed AD would require accomplishing the actions specified in the service information described previously. For information on the procedures and compliance times, see this service information at http://www.regulations.gov by searching for and locating Docket No. FAA-2017-0131.
Costs of Compliance
We estimate that this proposed AD affects 140 airplanes of U.S. registry. We estimate the following costs to comply with this proposed AD:
|Action||Labor cost||Parts cost||Cost per product||Cost on U.S. operators|
|Inspection||2 work-hours × $85 per hour = $170 per inspection cycle||$0||$170 per inspection cycle||$23,800 per inspection cycle.|
We estimate the following costs to do any necessary repairs that would be required based on the results of the proposed inspection. We have no way of determining the number of aircraft that might need this repair:
|Action||Labor cost||Parts cost||Cost per product|
|Repair||18 work-hour × $85 per hour = $1,530||$100||$1,630|
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.
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.
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- Air transportation
- Aviation safety
- Incorporation by reference
The Proposed Amendment
Accordingly, under the authority delegated to me by the Administrator, the FAA proposes to amend 14 CFR part 39 as follows:
PART 39—AIRWORTHINESS DIRECTIVES
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1. The authority citation for part 39 continues to read as follows: End Amendment Part
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2. The FAA amends § 39.13 by adding the following new airworthiness directive (AD): End Amendment Part
The Boeing Company: Docket No. FAA-2017-0131; Directorate Identifier 2016-NM-186-AD.
(a) Comments Due Date
We must receive comments by May 8, 2017.
(b) Affected ADs
This AD applies to The Boeing Company Model 737-300, -400, and -500 series airplanes, certificated in any category, as identified in Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 737-53A1357, dated August 9, 2016.Start Printed Page 14837
Air Transport Association (ATA) of America Code 53; Fuselage.
(e) Unsafe Condition
This AD was prompted by a report of fatigue cracking found in a certain fuselage frame common to the water tank support intercostal clip located between certain stringers. We are issuing this AD to detect and correct cracking, which could grow in size and result in a severed frame. Multiple adjacent severed frames would result in reduced structural integrity of the airplane.
Comply with this AD within the compliance times specified, unless already done.
Before the accumulation of 34,000 total flight cycles or within 6,000 flight cycles after the effective date of this AD, whichever occurs later, do a high frequency eddy current (HFEC) inspection for any cracking in the fuselage frame at station (STA) 947.5 common to the water tank support intercostal clip located between stringer S-24R and S-25R, in accordance with the Accomplishment Instructions of Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 737-53A1357, dated August 9, 2016.
(1) If no cracking is found, repeat the inspection thereafter at intervals not to exceed 12,000 flight cycles.
(2) If any cracking is found: Before further flight, repair in accordance with the Accomplishment Instructions of Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 737-53A1357, dated August 9, 2016.
(h) Terminating Action
Accomplishing the repair in accordance with the Accomplishment Instructions of Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 737-53A1357, dated August 9, 2016, terminates the inspection requirements of paragraph (g) of this AD.
(i) Alternative Methods of Compliance (AMOCs)
(1) The Manager, Los Angeles Aircraft Certification Office (ACO), FAA, has the authority to approve AMOCs for this AD, if requested using the procedures found in 14 CFR 39.19. In accordance with 14 CFR 39.19, send your request to your principal inspector or local Flight Standards District Office, as appropriate. If sending information directly to the manager of the ACO, send it to the attention of the person identified in paragraph (j)(1) of this AD. Information may be emailed to: 9-ANM-LAACO-AMOC-Requests@faa.gov.
(2) Before using any approved AMOC, notify your appropriate principal inspector, or lacking a principal inspector, the manager of the local flight standards district office/certificate holding district office.
(3) An AMOC that provides an acceptable level of safety may be used for any repair, modification, or alteration required by this AD if it is approved by the Boeing Commercial Airplanes Organization Designation Authorization (ODA) that has been authorized by the Manager, Los Angeles ACO, to make those findings. To be approved, the repair method, modification deviation, or alteration deviation must meet the certification basis of the airplane, and the approval must specifically refer to this AD.
(4) For service information that contains steps that are labeled as Required for Compliance (RC), the provisions of paragraphs (i)(4)(i) and (i)(4)(ii) of this AD apply.
(i) The steps labeled as RC, including substeps under an RC step and any figures identified in an RC step, must be done to comply with the AD. If a step or substep is labeled “RC Exempt,” then the RC requirement is removed from that step or substep. An AMOC is required for any deviations to RC steps, including substeps and identified figures.
(ii) Steps not labeled as RC may be deviated from using accepted methods in accordance with the operator's maintenance or inspection program without obtaining approval of an AMOC, provided the RC steps, including substeps and identified figures, can still be done as specified, and the airplane can be put back in an airworthy condition.
(j) Related Information
(1) For more information about this AD, contact Galib Abumeri, Aerospace Engineer, Airframe Branch, ANM-120L, FAA, Los Angeles ACO, 3960 Paramount Boulevard, Lakewood, CA 90712-4137; phone: 562-627-5324; fax: 562-627-5210; email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
(2) For service information identified in this AD, contact Boeing Commercial Airplanes, Attention: Contractual & Data Services (C&DS), 2600 Westminster Blvd., MC 110-SK57, Seal Beach, CA 90740-5600; telephone 562-797-1717; Internet https://www.myboeingfleet.com. You may view this referenced service information at the FAA, Transport Airplane Directorate, 1601 Lind Avenue SW., Renton, WA. For information on the availability of this material at the FAA, call 425-227-1221.
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Issued in Renton, Washington, on March 14, 2017.
Acting Manager, Transport Airplane Directorate, Aircraft Certification Service.
[FR Doc. 2017-05519 Filed 3-22-17; 8:45 am]
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