Skip to Content

Rule

Airworthiness Directives; Airbus SAS 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.
Enhanced Content

Relevant information about this document from Regulations.gov provides additional context. This information is not part of the official Federal Register document.

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:

Final rule.

SUMMARY:

The FAA is adopting a new airworthiness directive (AD) for certain Airbus SAS Model A320-251N and -271N airplanes; and Model A321-251N, -253N, -271N, and -272N airplanes. This AD was prompted by a report that during a calibration check, some torqueing tools used on the final assembly line have been found out of tolerance. This AD requires retorqueing each affected connection of sense and fire extinguishing lines within the pylon area to a correct torque value, as specified in an European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) AD, which is incorporated by reference. The FAA is issuing this AD to address the unsafe condition on these products.

DATES:

This AD is effective September 12, 2019.

The Director of the Federal Register approved the incorporation by reference of a certain publication listed in this AD as of September 12, 2019.

ADDRESSES:

For the material incorporated by reference (IBR) in this AD, contact the EASA, at Konrad-Adenauer-Ufer 3, 50668 Cologne, Germany; telephone +49 221 89990 1000; email ADs@easa.europa.eu; internet www.easa.europa.eu. You may find this IBR material on the EASA website at https://ad.easa.europa.eu. You may view this IBR material at the FAA, Transport Standards Branch, 2200 South 216th St., Des Moines, WA. For information on the availability of this material at the FAA, call 206-231-3195. It is also available in the AD docket on the internet at http://www.regulations.gov by searching for and locating Docket No. FAA-2019-0251.

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-2019-0251; 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 final rule, the regulatory evaluation, any comments received, and other information. The address for Docket Operations is U.S. Department of Transportation, Docket Operations, M-30, West Building Ground Floor, Room W12-140, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE, Washington, DC 20590.

Start Further Info

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Sanjay Ralhan, Aerospace Engineer, International Section, Transport Standards Branch, FAA, 2200 South 216th St., Des Moines, WA 98198; telephone and fax 206-231-3223.

End Further Info End Preamble Start Supplemental Information

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Discussion

The FAA issued a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) to amend 14 CFR part 39 by adding an AD that would apply to certain Airbus SAS Model A320-251N and -271N airplanes; and Model A321-251N, -253N, -271N, and -272N airplanes. The NPRM published in the Federal Register on May 7, 2019 (84 FR 19879). The NPRM was prompted by a report that during a calibration check, some torqueing tools used on the final assembly line have been found out of tolerance. The NPRM proposed to require retorqueing each affected connection of sense and fire extinguishing lines within the pylon area to a correct torque value.

The FAA is issuing this AD to address connections of sense and fire extinguishing lines within the pylon area that have been under-torqued, which could lead to leaks or Start Printed Page 38854disconnections of those lines and possibly result in reduced engine control and reduced safety margin in case of engine fire.

The EASA, which is the Technical Agent for the Member States of the European Union, has issued EASA AD 2019-0081, dated April 3, 2019 (“EASA AD 2019-0081”) (referred to after this as the Mandatory Continuing Airworthiness Information, or “the MCAI”), to correct an unsafe condition for certain Airbus SAS Model A320-251N and -271N airplanes; and Model A321-251N, -253N, -271N, and -272N airplanes. The MCAI states:

During periodic calibration check, some torqueing tools used on the final assembly line have been found out-of-tolerance. The subsequent investigation determined that connections of sense and fire extinguishing lines within the pylon area have been under-torqued on a group of aeroplanes.

This condition, if not corrected, could lead to leaks or disconnections of those lines, possibly resulting in reduced engine control and/or reduced safety margin in case of engine fire.

To address this potential unsafe condition, Airbus issued the applicable SB [service bulletin], providing instructions to restore the correct torque value of those affected connections.

For the reason described above, this [EASA] AD requires re-torqueing to the correct value the affected connections.

You may examine the MCAI in the AD docket on the internet at http://www.regulations.gov by searching for and locating Docket No. FAA-2019-0251.

Comments

The FAA gave the public the opportunity to participate in developing this final rule. The FAA has considered the comment received. The Air Line Pilots Association, International (ALPA) stated that it supports the NPRM.

Conclusion

The FAA reviewed the relevant data, considered the comment received, and determined that air safety and the public interest require adopting this final rule as proposed, except for minor editorial changes. The FAA has determined that these minor changes:

  • Are consistent with the intent that was proposed in the NPRM for addressing the unsafe condition; and
  • Do not add any additional burden upon the public than was already proposed in the NPRM.

Explanation of Revised Exception Language

In paragraph (i)(3) of the NPRM, which describes exceptions to Required for Compliance (RC) procedures and tests, an exception for paragraph (i)(2) of the NPRM was inadvertently left out. Also inadvertently included were exceptions for paragraphs (h)(1) and (h)(2) of the NPRM, which are standard exceptions that do not affect how to accomplish the RC actions. Paragraph (i)(3) of this final rule has been revised accordingly.

Related IBR Material Under 1 CFR Part 51

EASA AD 2019-0081 describes procedures for retorqueing each affected connection of sense and fire extinguishing lines within the pylon area to a correct torque value.

This material 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.

Costs of Compliance

The FAA estimates that this AD affects 15 airplanes of U.S. registry. The FAA estimates the following costs to comply with this AD:

Estimated Costs for Required Actions

Labor costParts costCost per productCost on U.S. operators
10 work-hours × $85 per hour = $850$0$850$12,750

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.

The FAA is 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.

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 transport category airplanes and associated appliances to the Director of the System Oversight Division.

Regulatory Findings

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 that this AD:

(1) Is not a “significant regulatory action” under Executive Order 12866,

(2) Will not affect intrastate aviation in Alaska, 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.

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

Adoption of the Amendment

Accordingly, under the authority delegated to me by the Administrator, the FAA amends 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
Start Printed Page 38855
[Amended]
Start Amendment Part

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

End Amendment Part

2019-14-07 Airbus SAS: Amendment 39-19685; Docket No. FAA-2019-0251; Product Identifier 2019-NM-057-AD.

(a) Effective Date

This AD is effective September 12, 2019.

(b) Affected ADs

None.

(c) Applicability

This AD applies to Airbus SAS Model A320-251N and -271N airplanes; and Model A321-251N, -253N, -271N, and -272N airplanes; certificated in any category, as identified in European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) AD 2019-0081, dated April 3, 2019 (“EASA AD 2019-0081”).

(d) Subject

Air Transport Association (ATA) of America Code 26, Fire protection.

(e) Reason

This AD was prompted by a report that during a calibration check, some torqueing tools used on the final assembly line have been found out of tolerance. The FAA is issuing this AD to address connections of sense and fire extinguishing lines within the pylon area that have been under-torqued, which could lead to leaks or disconnections of those lines and possibly result in reduced engine control and reduced safety margin in case of engine fire.

(f) Compliance

Comply with this AD within the compliance times specified, unless already done.

(g) Requirements

Except as specified in paragraph (h) of this AD: Comply with all required actions and compliance times specified in, and in accordance with, EASA AD 2019-0081.

(h) Exceptions to EASA AD 2019-0081

(1) For purposes of determining compliance with the requirements of this AD: Where EASA AD 2019-0081 refers to its effective date, this AD requires using the effective date of this AD.

(2) The “Remarks” section of EASA AD 2019-0081 does not apply to this AD.

(i) Other FAA AD Provisions

The following provisions also apply to this AD:

(1) Alternative Methods of Compliance (AMOCs): The Manager, International Section, Transport Standards Branch, 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 International Section, send it to the attention of the person identified in paragraph (j) of this AD. Information may be emailed to: 9-ANM-116-AMOC-REQUESTS@faa.gov. 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.

(2) Contacting the Manufacturer: For any requirement in this AD to obtain instructions from a manufacturer, the instructions must be accomplished using a method approved by the Manager, International Section, Transport Standards Branch, FAA; or EASA; or Airbus SAS's EASA Design Organization Approval (DOA). If approved by the DOA, the approval must include the DOA-authorized signature.

(3) Required for Compliance (RC): For any service information referenced in EASA AD 2019-0081 that contains RC procedures and tests: Except as required by paragraph (i)(2) of this AD, RC procedures and tests must be done to comply with this AD; any procedures or tests that are not identified as RC are recommended. Those procedures and tests that are not identified 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 procedures and tests identified as RC can be done and the airplane can be put back in an airworthy condition. Any substitutions or changes to procedures or tests identified as RC require approval of an AMOC.

(j) Related Information

For more information about this AD, contact Sanjay Ralhan, Aerospace Engineer, International Section, Transport Standards Branch, FAA, 2200 South 216th St., Des Moines, WA 98198; telephone and fax 206-231-3223.

(k) Material Incorporated by Reference

(1) The Director of the Federal Register approved the incorporation by reference (IBR) of the service information listed in this paragraph under 5 U.S.C. 552(a) and 1 CFR part 51.

(2) You must use this service information as applicable to do the actions required by this AD, unless this AD specifies otherwise.

(i) European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) AD 2019-0081, dated April 3, 2019.

(ii) [Reserved]

(3) For EASA AD 2019-0081, contact the EASA, Konrad-Adenauer-Ufer 3, 50668 Cologne, Germany; telephone +49 221 89990 6017; email ADs@easa.europa.eu; Internet www.easa.europa.eu. You may find this EASA AD on the EASA website at https://ad.easa.europa.eu.

(4) You may view this EASA AD at the FAA, Transport Standards Branch, 2200 South 216th St., Des Moines, WA. For information on the availability of this material at the FAA, call 206-231-3195. EASA AD 2019-0081 may be found in the AD docket on the internet at http://www.regulations.gov by searching for and locating Docket No. FAA-2019-0251.

(5) You may view this material 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/​cfr/​ibr-locations.html.

Start Signature

Issued in Des Moines, Washington, on July 22, 2019.

Dionne Palermo,

Acting Director, System Oversight Division, Aircraft Certification Service.

End Signature End Supplemental Information

[FR Doc. 2019-16814 Filed 8-7-19; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 4910-13-P