[Federal Register Volume 78, Number 97 (Monday, May 20, 2013)]
[Proposed Rules]
[Pages 29261-29263]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2013-11913]


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DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION

Federal Aviation Administration

14 CFR Part 39

[Docket No. FAA-2013-0424; Directorate Identifier 2013-NM-014-AD]
RIN 2120-AA64


Airworthiness Directives; Airbus Airplanes

AGENCY: Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT.

ACTION: Notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM).

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SUMMARY: We propose to adopt a new airworthiness directive (AD) for all 
Airbus Model A330-200 Freighter, A330-200 and -300, and A340-200 and -
300 series airplanes. This proposed AD was prompted by reports of 
cracked adjacent frame forks of a forward cargo door. This proposed AD 
would require repetitive detailed inspections for cracks and sheared, 
loose, or missing rivets of the forward cargo door and, for certain 
airplanes, of the aft cargo door, and repair if necessary. We are 
proposing this AD to detect and correct cracked or ruptured cargo door 
frames, which could result in reduced structural integrity of the 
forward or aft cargo door.

DATES: We must receive comments on this proposed AD by July 5, 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, between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday 
through Friday, except Federal holidays.
    For service information identified in this proposed AD, contact 
Airbus SAS, Airworthiness Office--EAL, 1 Rond Point Maurice Bellonte, 
31707 Blagnac Cedex, France; telephone +33 5 61 93 36 96; fax +33 5 61 
93 45 80; email airworthiness.A330-A340@airbus.com; Internet http://www.airbus.com. You may review copies of the 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.

Examining the AD Docket

    You may examine the AD docket on the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov; or in person at the Docket Operations office 
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 Operations office (telephone (800) 647-5527) is 
in the ADDRESSES section. Comments will be available in the AD docket 
shortly after receipt.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Vladimir Ulyanov, Aerospace Engineer, 
International Branch, ANM-116, Transport Airplane Directorate, FAA, 
1601 Lind Avenue SW., Renton, Washington 98057-3356; telephone (425) 
227-1138; fax (425) 227-1149.

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-2013-0424; 
Directorate Identifier 2013-NM-014-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 based on 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.

[[Page 29262]]

Discussion

    The European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA), which is the Technical 
Agent for the Member States of the European Community, has issued EASA 
Airworthiness Directive 2012-0274, dated December 21, 2012 (referred to 
after this as the Mandatory Continuing Airworthiness Information, or 
``the MCAI''), to correct an unsafe condition for the specified 
products. The MCAI states:

    One A330 operator recently reported a case where two adjacent 
frame (FR) forks of a forward cargo door were found cracked. FR20B 
was found cracked through, FR21 was found cracked half through. At 
the time of the findings, the affected aeroplane had accumulated 
around 21 000 flight cycles (FC) and it had already been inspected 
in accordance with EASA AD 2011-0007R1 [which corresponds to FAA AD 
2012-12-12, Amendment 39-17092 (77 FR 37797, June 25, 2012)] and 
[airworthiness limitation instructions] ALI Task 523106-01-1. 
However, during those inspections, the forward cargo door handle 
access panel is not required to be removed, which explains why the 
cracks at these two internal frame locations were not detected.
    After further analysis, it was determined that, in case of 
cracked or ruptured (forward or aft) cargo door frame, the loads 
will be transferred to the remaining structural elements. However, 
the second load path is able to sustain the loads for a limited 
number of flight cycles only.
    This condition, if not detected and corrected, could lead to 
rupture of two vertical frames, resulting in reduced structural 
integrity of the forward or aft cargo door.
    To address this condition, Airbus issued four separate Alert 
Operators Transmissions (AOT), giving instructions for repetitive 
inspections of the affected areas.
    For the reasons described above, this [EASA] AD requires 
repetitive detailed visual inspections of aft cargo door at FR60 and 
FR60A [for certain airplanes] and forward cargo door at FR21 and 
FR20B [for all airplanes], where the cargo door handle access panels 
are located, as follow:

--outer skin rivets for sheared, loose or missing rivets at frame 
fork ends,
--whole inner forks for cracks and for sheared, loose or missing 
rivets at frame web and flange after removal of handle access 
panels, and
    the accomplishment of the applicable corrective actions [which 
include repair, in accordance with a method approved by the Manager, 
International Branch, ANM-116, Transport Airplane Directorate, FAA.]
    Note: Accomplishment of the above inspections does not cancel 
accomplishment of the inspections as required by EASA AD 2011-
0007R1, nor accomplishment of those in accordance with ALI Task 
523106-01-1.

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

Relevant Service Information

    Airbus has issued the following Alert Operator Transmissions 
(AOTs). The actions described in this service information are intended 
to correct the unsafe condition identified in the MCAI.
     Airbus AOT A330-A52L001-12, dated December 3, 2012.
     Airbus AOT A330-A52L003-12, dated December 3, 2012.
     Airbus AOT A340-A52L002-12, dated December 3, 2012.
     Airbus AOT A340-A52L004-12, dated December 3, 2012.

FAA's Determination and Requirements of This 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 the State of Design Authority, we have 
been notified of the unsafe condition described in the MCAI and service 
information referenced above. We are proposing this AD because we 
evaluated all pertinent information and determined an unsafe condition 
exists and is likely to exist or develop on other products of the same 
type design.

Differences Between This Proposed AD and the MCAI or Service 
Information

    The service information specifies to contact the manufacturer for 
instructions on how to repair certain conditions, but this proposed AD 
would require repairing those conditions using a method approved by the 
FAA or the EASA (or its delegated agent).

Costs of Compliance

    Based on the service information, we estimate that this proposed AD 
would affect about 66 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. Based on these figures, we estimate the cost of the proposed 
AD on U.S. operators to be $5,610, or $85 per product.
    We have received no definitive data that would enable us to provide 
cost estimates for the on-condition actions specified in this AD.

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.
    We prepared a regulatory evaluation of the estimated costs to 
comply with this proposed AD and placed it in the AD docket.

List of Subjects in 14 CFR Part 39

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

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

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. The FAA amends Sec.  39.13 by adding the following new AD:

Airbus: Docket No. FAA-2013-0424; Directorate Identifier 2013-NM-
014-AD.

[[Page 29263]]

(a) Comments Due Date

    We must receive comments by July 5, 2013.

(b) Affected ADs

    None.

(c) Applicability

    This AD applies to Airbus Model A330-201, -202, -203, -223, -
223F, -243, -243F, -301, -302, -303, -321, -322, -323, -341, -342, 
and -343 airplanes; and Model A340-211, -212, -213, -311, -312, and 
-313 airplanes; certificated in any category; all manufacturer 
serial numbers (MSN).

(d) Subject

    Air Transport Association (ATA) of America Code 52, Doors.

(e) Reason

    This AD was prompted by reports of cracked adjacent frame forks 
of a forward cargo door. We are issuing this AD to detect and 
correct cracked or ruptured cargo door frames, which could result in 
reduced structural integrity of the forward or aft cargo door.

(f) Compliance

    You are responsible for having the actions required by this AD 
performed within the compliance times specified, unless the actions 
have already been done.

(g) Inspections for Certain Airplanes

    For Model A330-200, -200 Freighter, and -300 airplanes up to MSN 
0162 inclusive, except those on which Airbus Service Bulletin A330-
52-3044 has been embodied in service; and for Model A340-200 and -
300 airplanes up to MSN 0164 inclusive, except those on which Airbus 
Service Bulletin A340-52-4054 has been embodied in service: Before 
the accumulation of 15,800 total flight cycles since the airplane's 
first flight or within 100 flight cycles after the effective date of 
this AD, whichever occurs later, do a detailed inspection of the 
outer skin rivets at the frame fork end of frame (FR)60 and FR60A of 
the aft cargo door for sheared, loose, or missing rivets; and do a 
detailed inspection of the whole FR60 and FR60A forks for cracking 
and for sheared, loose, or missing rivets at the frame web and 
flanges; in accordance with Airbus Alert Operator Transmission (AOT) 
A330-A52L001-12, dated December 3, 2012; or Airbus AOT A340-A52L002-
12, dated December 3, 2012; as applicable. Repeat the inspections 
thereafter at intervals not to exceed 400 flight cycles.

(h) Inspections for All Airplanes

    Within the applicable compliance time specified in paragraph 
(h)(1) or (h)(2) of this AD, do a detailed inspection of outer skin 
rivets at the frame fork end of FR21 and FR20B of the forward cargo 
door for sheared, loose, or missing rivets; and do a detailed 
inspection of the whole FR21 and FR20B forks for cracks and for 
sheared, loose, or missing rivets at the frame web and flanges; in 
accordance with Airbus AOT A330-A52L003-12, dated December 3, 2012; 
or Airbus AOT A340-A52L004-12, dated December 3, 2012; as 
applicable. Repeat this inspection thereafter at intervals not to 
exceed 800 flight cycles.
    (1) For airplanes having less than 18,400 total flight cycles 
since the airplane's first flight as of the effective date of this 
AD: Before the accumulation of 10,600 total flight cycles since the 
airplane's first flight, or within 100 flight cycles after the 
effective date of this AD, whichever occurs later.
    (2) For airplanes having 18,400 total flight cycles or more 
since the airplane's first flight as of the effective date of this 
AD: Within 50 flight cycles after the effective date of this AD.

(i) Repair

    If any cracking, or sheared, loose, or missing rivet is found 
during any inspection required by this AD, before further flight, 
repair using a method approved by either the Manager, International 
Branch, ANM-116, Transport Airplane Directorate, FAA; or the 
European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) (or its delegated agent).

(j) Actions Not Terminating Action

    Doing the repair required by paragraph (i) of this AD is not 
terminating action for the repetitive inspections required by 
paragraphs (g) and (h) of this AD for that cargo door, unless the 
repair instruction specifically states it is terminating action.

(k) Other FAA AD Provisions

    The following provisions also apply to this AD:
    (1) Alternative Methods of Compliance (AMOCs): The Manager, 
International Branch, ANM-116, Transport Airplane Directorate, 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 Branch, send it to ATTN: Vladimir 
Ulyanov, Aerospace Engineer, International Branch, ANM-116, 
Transport Airplane Directorate, FAA 1601 Lind Avenue SW., Renton, 
Washington 98057-3356; telephone (425) 227-1138; fax (425) 227-1149. 
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. The AMOC approval letter must specifically reference this 
AD.
    (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.

(l) Related Information

    (1) Refer to Mandatory Continuing Airworthiness Information 
European Aviation Safety Agency Airworthiness Directive 2012-0274, 
dated December 21, 2012, and the AOTs identified in paragraphs 
(l)(1)(i) through (l)(1)(iv) of this AD, for related information.
    (i) Airbus AOT A330-A52L001-12, dated December 3, 2012.
    (ii) Airbus AOT A330-A52L003-12, dated December 3, 2012.
    (iii) Airbus AOT A340-A52L002-12, dated December 3, 2012.
    (iv) Airbus AOT A340-A52L004-12, dated December 3, 2012.
    (2) For service information identified in this AD, contact 
Airbus SAS, Airworthiness Office--EAL, 1 Rond Point Maurice 
Bellonte, 31707 Blagnac Cedex, France; telephone +33 5 61 93 36 96; 
fax +33 5 61 93 45 80; email airworthiness.A330-A340@airbus.com; 
Internet http://www.airbus.com. You may review copies of the 
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.

    Issued In Renton, Washington, on May 13, 2013.
Ali Bahrami,
Manager, Transport Airplane Directorate, Aircraft Certification 
Service.
[FR Doc. 2013-11913 Filed 5-17-13; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4910-13-P