Skip to Content

Proposed Rule

Airworthiness Directives; Pilatus Aircraft Ltd. Airplanes

Comments on this document are being accepted at Regulations.gov. Submit a formal comment

Document Details

Information about this document as published in the Federal Register.

Document Statistics
Document page views are updated periodically throughout the day and are cumulative counts for this document including its time on Public Inspection. Counts are subject to sampling, reprocessing and revision (up or down) throughout the day.
Published Document

This document has been published in the Federal Register. Use the PDF linked in the document sidebar for the official electronic format.

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 certain Pilatus Aircraft Ltd. Models PC-6, PC-6/350, PC-6/350-H1, PC-6/350-H2, PC-6/A, PC-6/A-H1, PC-6/A-H2, PC-6/B-H2, PC-6/B1-H2, PC-6/B2-H2, PC-6/B2-H4, PC-6/C-H2, PC-6/C1-H2, PC-6-H1, and PC-6-H2 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 Start Printed Page 13572the unsafe condition as flap actuator taper pins that were not swaged during the manufacturing process. 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 May 20, 2019.

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; phone: +41 (0)41 619 67 74; fax: +41 (0)41 619 67 73; email: techsupport@pilatus-aircraft.com; internet: http://www.pilatus-aircraft.com. You may review this referenced service information at the FAA, Policy and Innovation Division, 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 by searching for and locating Docket No. FAA-2018-0240; or in person at Docket Operations 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 Docket Operations (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:

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

End Further Info End Preamble Start Supplemental Information

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-2018-0240; Product Identifier 2018-CE-057-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 European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA), which is the Technical Agent for the Member States of the European Community, has issued EASA AD No. 2018-0235, dated November 5, 2018 (referred to after this as “the MCAI”), to correct an unsafe condition for Pilatus Aircraft Limited Models PC-6, PC-6/350, PC-6/350-H1, PC-6/350-H2, PC-6/A, PC-6/A-H1, PC-6/A-H2, PC-6/B-H2, PC-6/B1-H2, PC-6/B2-H2, PC-6/B2-H4, PC-6/C-H2, PC-6/C1-H2, PC-6-H1, and PC-6-H2 airplanes. The MCAI states:

During a recent overhaul, two new flap actuators were found to have taper pins installed that, apparently, had not been swaged. Investigation results identified that the taper pins had been incorrectly swaged during the manufacturing process.

This condition, if not detected and corrected, could lead to loss of one or both taper pins, consequent asymmetric flap deployment or flap surface flutter, possibly resulting in loss of control of the aeroplane.

To address this potential unsafe condition, Pilatus issued the [service bulletin] SB to provide inspection instructions.

For the reason described above, this [EASA] AD requires a one-time inspection of the taper pins of the affected parts for correct installation and, depending on findings, accomplishment of applicable corrective action(s). This [EASA] AD also requires inspection of, and, depending on findings, corrective action(s) on, affected parts held as spare, prior to installation.

You may examine the MCAI on the internet at http://www.regulations.gov by searching for and locating Docket No. FAA-2018-0240.

Related Service Information Under 1 CFR Part 51

Pilatus Aircraft Ltd. has issued Pilatus PC-6 Service Bulletin No. 27-005, dated July 2, 2018. The service information contains procedures for removing and inspecting the flap actuator assemblies and pushrod assemblies, modifying or replacing the taper pins if necessary, and reinstalling the assemblies. 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.

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.

Costs of Compliance

We estimate that this proposed AD will affect 30 products of U.S. registry. We also estimate that it would take about 12 work-hours per product to comply with the basic inspection requirements of this proposed AD. The average labor rate is $85 per work-hour.

Based on these figures, we estimate the cost of the proposed AD on U.S. operators to be $30,600, or $1,020 per product.

In addition, we estimate that any necessary follow-on modification or replacement actions would require parts costing $30,000, for a cost of $1,000 per product. We have no way of determining the number of products that may need these actions.

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 Start Printed Page 13573products identified in this rulemaking action.

This AD is issued in accordance with authority delegated by the Executive Director, Aircraft Certification Service, as authorized by FAA Order 8000.51C. In accordance with that order, issuance of ADs is normally a function of the Compliance and Airworthiness Division, but during this transition period, the Executive Director has delegated the authority to issue ADs applicable to small airplanes, gliders, balloons, airships, domestic business jet transport airplanes, and associated appliances to the Director of the Policy and Innovation Division.

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
End List of Subjects

The Proposed Amendment

Accordingly, under the authority delegated to me by the Administrator, the FAA proposes to amend 14 CFR part 39 as follows:

Start Part

PART 39—AIRWORTHINESS DIRECTIVES

End Part Start Amendment Part

1. The authority citation for part 39 continues to read as follows:

End Amendment Part Start Authority

Authority: 49 U.S.C. 106(g), 40113, 44701.

End Authority
[Amended]
Start Amendment Part

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

End Amendment Part

Pilatus Aircraft Ltd.: Docket No. FAA-2018-0240; Product Identifier 2018-CE-057-AD.

(a) Comments Due Date

We must receive comments by May 20, 2019.

(b) Affected ADs

None.

(c) Applicability

This AD applies to Pilatus Aircraft Ltd. Models PC-6, PC-6/350, PC-6/350-H1, PC-6/350-H2, PC-6/A, PC-6/A-H1, PC-6/A-H2, PC-6/B-H2, PC-6/B1-H2, PC-6/B2-H2, PC-6/B2-H4, PC-6/C-H2, PC-6/C1-H2, PC-6-H1, and PC-6-H2 airplanes, all serial numbers, certificated in any category, with a left-hand or right-hand flap actuator assembly part number (P/N) 6132.0039.51 or P/N 6132.0039.52 or pushrod assembly P/N 6132.0040.00 installed, except those assemblies supplied by Pilatus Aircraft Ltd. with a European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) form 1 tag dated July 2, 2018 or later.

Note 1 to paragraph (c) of this AD:

These airplanes may also be identified as Fairchild Republic Company airplanes, Fairchild Industries airplanes, Fairchild Heli Porter airplanes, or Fairchild-Hiller Corporation airplanes.

(d) Subject

Air Transport Association of America (ATA) Code 27: Flight 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 flap actuator taper pins that were not swaged during the manufacturing process. We are issuing this AD to prevent loss of one or both taper pins that could lead to asymmetric flap deployment or flap surface flutter and result in loss of control of the airplane.

(f) Actions and Compliance

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

(1) Within the next 100 hours time-in-service after the effective date of this AD or within the next 12 months after the effective date of this AD, whichever occurs first, prepare the airplane and inspect each flap actuator taper pin for correct installation by following the Accomplishment Instructions-Part 1-On Aircraft, paragraphs 3.A through 3.B(2), of Pilatus Aircraft Ltd. PC-6 Service Bulletin No. 27-005, dated July 2, 2018 (Pilatus SB No. 27-005).

(i) If a taper pin has any damage, before further flight, replace and swage the taper pin and reinstall the pushrod assembly by following the Accomplishment Instructions-Part 1-On Aircraft, paragraphs 3.C and 3.D of Pilatus SB No. 27-005.

(ii) If a taper pin is incorrectly swaged or is not swaged, before further flight, swage the taper pin and reinstall the pushrod assembly by following the Accomplishment Instructions-Part 1-On Aircraft, paragraphs 3.C and 3.D of Pilatus SB No. 27-005.

(2) After the effective date of this AD, do not install a flap actuator assembly, P/N 6132.0039.51 or P/N 6132.0039.52, or pushrod assembly P/N 6132.0040.00 on any airplane unless the part was supplied by Pilatus Aircraft Ltd. with an EASA form 1 tag dated July 2, 2018 or later, or the part has been inspected in accordance with paragraphs (f)(1)(i) and (ii) of this AD.

(g) Other FAA AD Provisions

The following provisions also apply to this AD:

(1) Alternative Methods of Compliance (AMOCs): The Manager, Small Airplane Standards Branch, 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 Standards Branch, 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) Contacting the Manufacturer: For any requirement in this AD to obtain corrective actions from a manufacturer, the action must instead be accomplished using a method approved by the Manager, Small Airplane Standards Branch, FAA, or EASA.

(h) Related Information

Refer to MCAI EASA AD No. 2018-0235, dated November 5, 2018, for related information. You may examine the MCAI on the internet at http://www.regulations.gov by searching for and locating Docket No. FAA-2018-0240. For service information related to this AD, contact PILATUS Aircraft Ltd., Customer Technical Support (MCC), P.O. Box 992, CH-6371 Stans, Switzerland; phone: +41 (0)41 619 67 74; fax: +41 (0)41 619 67 73; email: techsupport@pilatus-aircraft.com; internet: http://www.pilatus-aircraft.com. You may review this referenced service information at the FAA, Policy and Innovation Division, 901 Locust, Kansas City, Missouri 64106. For information on the availability of this material at the FAA, call (816) 329-4148.

Start Signature

Issued in Kansas City, Missouri, on March 25, 2019.

Melvin J. Johnson,

Aircraft Certification Service, Deputy Director, Policy and Innovation Division, AIR-601.

End Signature End Supplemental Information

[FR Doc. 2019-06672 Filed 4-4-19; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 4910-13-P