[Federal Register Volume 69, Number 152 (Monday, August 9, 2004)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Pages 48129-48131]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 04-17983]



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Federal Register / Vol. 69, No. 152 / Monday, August 9, 2004 / Rules 
and Regulations

[[Page 48129]]



DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION

Federal Aviation Administration

14 CFR Part 39

[Docket No. 2002-NM-151-AD; Amendment 39-13766; AD 2004-16-10]
RIN 2120-AA64


Airworthiness Directives; Boeing Model 767-200 and -300 Series 
Airplanes Equipped With Off-Wing Escape Slides

AGENCY: Federal Aviation Administration, DOT.

ACTION: Final rule.

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SUMMARY: This amendment adopts a new airworthiness directive (AD), 
applicable to certain Boeing Model 767-200 and -300 series airplanes 
equipped with off-wing escape slides, that requires an inspection of 
the door-opening actuators for the off-wing slide compartment on the 
right and left sides of the airplane to determine the actuator 
cartridge serial number, and corrective actions, if necessary. This 
action is necessary to prevent the door-opening actuators for the off-
wing slide compartment from not firing, which could cause the door to 
open improperly and prevent the deployment of the off-wing escape 
slide, leading to the loss of an evacuation route. This action is 
intended to address the identified unsafe condition.

DATES: Effective September 13, 2004.
    The incorporation by reference of a certain publication listed in 
the regulations is approved by the Director of the Federal Register as 
of September 13, 2004.

ADDRESSES: The service information referenced in this AD may be 
obtained from Boeing Commercial Airplanes, P.O. Box 3707, Seattle, 
Washington 98124-2207; and Universal Propulsion Company, Inc. (formerly 
OEA Inc.), P.O. Box KK, Highway 12, Explosive Technology Rd., 
Fairfield, California 94533-0659. This information may be examined at 
the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), Transport Airplane 
Directorate, Rules Docket, 1601 Lind Avenue, SW., Renton, Washington; 
or 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.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Susan Rosanske, Cabin Safety & 
Environmental Systems Branch, ANM-150S, FAA, Seattle Aircraft 
Certification Office, 1601 Lind Avenue, SW., Renton, Washington 98055-
4056; telephone (425) 917-6448; fax (425) 917-6590.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: A proposal to amend part 39 of the Federal 
Aviation Regulations (14 CFR part 39) to include an airworthiness 
directive (AD) that is applicable to all Boeing Model 767-200 and -300 
series airplanes was published in the Federal Register on February 6, 
2004 (69 FR 5783). That action proposed to require an inspection of the 
actuators for the off-wing slide compartment door on the right and left 
sides of the airplane to determine the actuator cartridge serial 
number, and corrective actions, if necessary.

Comments

    Interested persons have been afforded an opportunity to participate 
in the making of this amendment. Due consideration has been given to 
the comments received.

Agreement With the Proposed Rule

    Several commenters agree with the proposed rule.

Request To Revise Applicability

    One commenter requests to revise the applicability of the proposed 
rule to exclude airplanes that have been converted to freighters 
without off-wing escape slides and airplanes on which the off-wing 
escape system has been removed or deactivated. The commenter states 
that airplanes that have the off-wing escape system removed or 
deactivated are not subject to the requirements of the proposed rule. 
The commenter contends that operators will need to request an 
alternative method of compliance to clarify applicable airplanes and, 
therefore, will tie up FAA resources. The commenter concludes that 
clarifying the applicability in the proposed AD will make the 
rulemaking process less burdensome.
    We agree in part with the commenter. We agree that the 
applicability of the proposed rule should be revised to clarify that 
airplanes not equipped with off-wing escape systems are not subject to 
the final rule. We have revised the applicability of the final rule as 
follows: ``Model 767-200 and -300 series airplanes equipped with off-
wing escape slides; certificated in any category.'' However, we do not 
agree to revise the applicability to exclude airplanes with deactivated 
off-wing escape systems. Due to the safety implications and the variety 
of methods the off-wing escape systems may be deactivated, airplanes 
with deactivated off-wing escape systems are subject to the final rule. 
However, paragraph (d) of the final rule provides affected operators 
the opportunity to apply for approval of an alternative method of 
compliance if the operator also presents data that justify the request.

Request To Revise Number of Affected Airplanes

    One commenter requests that the number of airplanes of the affected 
design in the worldwide fleet specified in the ``Cost Impact'' 
paragraph of the proposed rule be revised. The commenter contends that 
the affected number of airplanes worldwide is 690 and not 829 as stated 
in the proposed rule. The commenter notes that the effectivity is line 
numbers 2 through 920. The commenter states that after excluding Model 
767-400ER, 767-300F, and 767-300 airplanes without off-wing escape 
slides, the resulting number of affected airplanes is approximately 
690.
    We agree that the number of affected airplanes worldwide in the 
``Cost Impact'' paragraph of the final rule should be revised. However, 
we do not agree with the specific change requested by the commenter to 
revise the number to 690. As stated earlier, the applicability of this 
final rule has been clarified to ``Model 767-200 and -300 series 
airplanes equipped with off-wing escape slides. * * *'' The airplane 
models affected by this final rule have continued to be manufactured 
and modified since the issuance of the

[[Page 48130]]

proposed rule. Therefore we revised the number of affected airplanes 
specified in the ``Cost Impact'' paragraph of the final rule from 829 
to 696 airplanes in the worldwide fleet, and the number of airplanes of 
U.S. registry from 346 to 297.

Request To Revise Work Hours

    The same commenter also requests that the work hours in the ``Cost 
Impact'' paragraph of the proposed AD be revised from 6 to 8.75. The 
commenter points out that Boeing Special Attention Service Bulletin 
767-25-0299, dated January 18, 2001, specifies 8 work hours per 
airplane to accomplish the service bulletin and the commenter estimates 
0.75 work hour per airplane to accomplish the cartridge inspection per 
the OEA Aerospace, Inc. Service Bulletin 5262 (02) SB (NC), dated 
October 2, 2000.
    We do not agree with the commenter's request to revise the work 
hours in the ``Cost Impact'' paragraph of the final rule. The 8 work 
hours specified in the Boeing service bulletin includes ``incidental'' 
costs, and the work hours estimated for the OEA service bulletin are 
for an ``on-condition'' action. The cost impact figures discussed in AD 
rulemaking actions represent only the time necessary to perform the 
specific actions actually required by the AD. We recognize that 
operators may incur ``incidental'' costs in addition to ``direct'' 
costs. However cost analysis of the AD does not typically include 
``incidental costs,'' such as the time required to gain access and 
close up, planning time, or time necessitated by other administrative 
actions. We also do not consider the costs of ``on-condition'' actions 
(that is, actions needed to correct an unsafe condition) because, 
regardless of AD direction, those actions would be required to correct 
an unsafe condition identified in an airplane and ensure operation of 
that airplane in an airworthy condition, as required by the Federal 
Aviation Regulations.
    For clarification of the ``on-condition'' actions, we have revised 
the ``Cost Impact'' paragraph of the final rule to show the cost of the 
``on-condition'' inspection and replacement of the actuator cartridge 
in addition to the ``direct costs'' of the required inspection of the 
door-opening actuators for the off-wing slide compartment.

Request To Clarify Certain Wording

    One commenter requests to revise certain wording in the 
``Explanation of Relevant Service Information'' paragraphs of the 
proposed rule and in the body of the proposed rule. The commenter 
suggests changing ``actuators for the off-wing slide compartment door'' 
to ``door opening actuators for the off-wing slide compartment'' in 
order to clearly identify that the door-opening actuator is affected 
instead of the door latch opening actuators. In addition, the commenter 
suggests changing ``actuators of the off-wing slide compartment door'' 
to ``actuators for the off-wing slide compartment door'' for clarity. 
The commenter also suggests that the words ``additional source'' be 
replaced with ``detailed sources'' in the paragraphs describing the OEA 
service bulletin because the OEA service bulletin contains the detailed 
steps for actuator cartridge inspection after removal from the 
airplane.
    We agree that revising the wording suggested by the commenter would 
provide clarification of affected actuators and the referenced service 
bulletin. However, the ``Explanation of Relevant Service Information'' 
paragraph is not restated in the final rule so no change is made in 
this regard. To clarify that the door-opening actuator is affected 
instead of the door latch opening actuators, we have revised the 
wording ``actuator(s) for the off-wing slide compartment door'' in the 
preamble and body of the final rule to ``door-opening actuator(s) for 
the off-wing slide compartment.'' We also revised Note 1 of the final 
rule to state ``* * * as an additional detailed source of service 
information * * *'' to clarify the reference to the OEA service 
bulletin.

Request for Credit for Previous Accomplishment

    One commenter requests credit for previous accomplishment of the 
inspections per Boeing Special Attention Service Bulletin 767-25-0299, 
dated January 18, 2001.
    We agree that credit should be given for previous accomplishment of 
the inspections per the Boeing service bulletin. However, we do not 
need to clarify this in the final rule because credit is already given. 
Operators are always given credit for work previously performed by 
means of the phrase in the compliance section of the AD that states, 
``Compliance: Required as indicated, unless accomplished previously.'' 
Therefore, inspections accomplished prior to the effective date of the 
final rule per Boeing Special Attention Service Bulletin 767-25-0299, 
dated January 18, 2001 (listed as the source of service information for 
the final rule), are acceptable for compliance with the inspections of 
the final rule. We have not changed the final rule regarding this 
issue.

Conclusion

    After careful review of the available data, including the comments 
noted above, we have determined that air safety and the public interest 
require the adoption of the rule with the changes previously described. 
We have determined that these changes will neither increase the 
economic burden on any operator nor increase the scope of the AD.

Cost Impact

    There are approximately 696 airplanes of the affected design in the 
worldwide fleet. We estimate that 297 airplanes of U.S. registry will 
be affected by this AD, that it will take approximately 6 work hours 
per airplane to accomplish the required inspection of the door-opening 
actuators for the off-wing slide compartment, and that the average 
labor rate is $65 per work hour. Based on these figures, the cost 
impact of the AD on U.S. operators is estimated to be $115,830, or $390 
per airplane.
    Inspection of the actuator cartridge, if required, will take 
approximately 1 work hour to accomplish, and the average labor rate is 
$65 per work hour. Based on these figures, the cost impact of the 
inspection on U.S. operators is estimated to be $65 per actuator 
cartridge.
    Replacement of the actuator cartridge, if required, will take 
approximately 1 work hour per airplane to accomplish, and the average 
labor rate is $65 per work hour. Based on these figures, the cost 
impact of the replacement on U.S. operators is estimated to be $65 per 
actuator cartridge.
    The cost impact figures discussed above are based on assumptions 
that no operator has yet accomplished any of the requirements of this 
AD action, and that no operator would accomplish those actions in the 
future if this AD were not adopted. The cost impact figures discussed 
in AD rulemaking actions represent only the time necessary to perform 
the specific actions actually required by the AD. These figures 
typically do not include incidental costs, such as the time required to 
gain access and close up, planning time, or time necessitated by other 
administrative actions.

Regulatory Impact

    The regulations adopted herein 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. Therefore, it 
is

[[Page 48131]]

determined that this final rule does not have federalism implications 
under Executive Order 13132.
    For the reasons discussed above, I certify that this action (1) is 
not a ``significant regulatory action'' under Executive Order 12866; 
(2) is not a ``significant rule'' under 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. A final evaluation has been prepared for this action 
and it is contained in the Rules Docket. A copy of it may be obtained 
from the Rules Docket at the location provided under the caption 
ADDRESSES.

List of Subjects in 14 CFR Part 39

    Air transportation, Aircraft, Aviation safety, Incorporation by 
reference, Safety.

Adoption of the Amendment

0
Accordingly, pursuant to the authority delegated to me by the 
Administrator, the Federal Aviation Administration amends part 39 of 
the Federal Aviation Regulations (14 CFR part 39) as follows:

PART 39--AIRWORTHINESS DIRECTIVES

0
1. The authority citation for part 39 continues to read as follows:

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


Sec.  39.13  [Amended]

0
2. Section 39.13 is amended by adding the following new airworthiness 
directive:

2004-16-10 Boeing: Amendment 39-13766. Docket 2002-NM-151-AD.

    Applicability: Model 767-200 and -300 series airplanes equipped 
with off-wing escape slides; certificated in any category.
    Compliance: Required as indicated, unless accomplished 
previously.
    To prevent the door-opening actuators for the off-wing slide 
compartment from not firing, which could cause the door to open 
improperly and prevent the deployment of the off-wing escape slide, 
leading to the loss of an evacuation route, accomplish the 
following:

Inspection and Corrective Action

    (a) Within two years after the effective date of this AD, do an 
inspection of the door-opening actuators for the off-wing slide 
compartment on the right and left sides of the airplane to determine 
the actuator cartridge serial number, in accordance with the 
Accomplishment Instructions of Boeing Special Attention Service 
Bulletin 767-25-0299, dated January 18, 2001.
    (b) If any actuator cartridge having serial numbers 5481 through 
5741 inclusive is found during the inspection required by paragraph 
(a) of this AD: Before further flight, perform the actions specified 
in paragraphs (b)(1) through (b)(3) of this AD in accordance with 
the Accomplishment Instructions of Boeing Special Attention Service 
Bulletin 767-25-0299, dated January 18, 2001.
    (1) Remove the door-opening actuator for the off-wing slide 
compartment.
    (2) Perform an inspection of the actuator cartridge for the 
presence of a clearance hole and corrective actions, if necessary 
(includes replacing the actuator cartridge with a new actuator 
cartridge or a serviceable actuator cartridge from a recharge kit).
    (3) Install the door-opening actuator for the off-wing slide 
compartment.

    Note 1:
    Boeing Special Attention Service Bulletin 767-25-0299, dated 
January 18, 2001, references OEA Aerospace, Inc. Service Bulletin 
5262 (02) SB (NC), dated October 2, 2000, as an additional detailed 
source of service information for performing the inspection of the 
actuator cartridge and corrective actions.

Parts Installation

    (c) As of the effective date of this AD, no person shall 
install, on any airplane, an actuator for the off-wing escape slide 
having OEA part number 5262200 cartridge assembly, with actuator 
cartridge serial numbers 5481 through 5741 inclusive, that does not 
have a clearance hole between the two firing pins.

Alternative Methods of Compliance

    (d) In accordance with 14 CFR 39.19, the Manager, Seattle 
Aircraft Certification Office, FAA, is authorized to approve 
alternative methods of compliance for this AD.

Incorporation by Reference

    (e) The actions shall be done in accordance with Boeing Special 
Attention Service Bulletin 767-25-0299, dated January 18, 2001. This 
incorporation by reference was approved by the Director of the 
Federal Register in accordance with 5 U.S.C. 552(a) and 1 CFR part 
51. Copies may be obtained from Boeing Commercial Airplanes, P.O. 
Box 3707, Seattle, Washington 98124-2207. Copies may be inspected at 
the FAA, Transport Airplane Directorate, 1601 Lind Avenue, SW., 
Renton, Washington; or 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.

Effective Date

    (f) This amendment becomes effective on September 13, 2004.

    Issued in Renton, Washington, on July 29, 2004.
Ali Bahrami,
Manager, Transport Airplane Directorate, Aircraft Certification 
Service.
[FR Doc. 04-17983 Filed 8-6-04; 8:45 am]
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