[Federal Register Volume 78, Number 178 (Friday, September 13, 2013)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Pages 56597-56599]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2013-22181]


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DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION

Federal Aviation Administration

14 CFR Part 39

[Docket No. FAA-2013-0398; Directorate Identifier 2011-SW-065-AD; 
Amendment 39-17578; AD 2013-18-05]
RIN 2120-AA64


Airworthiness Directives; Eurocopter Deutschland GmbH Helicopters

AGENCY: Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT.

ACTION: Final rule.

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SUMMARY: We are adopting a new airworthiness directive (AD) for 
Eurocopter Deutschland GmbH (ECD) Model EC135P1, EC135P2, EC135P2+, 
EC135T1, EC135T2, and EC135T2+ helicopters with certain fire 
extinguishing systems installed. This AD requires modifying the fire 
extinguishing system injection tubes. This AD is prompted by a report 
that the injection tubes are deforming due to heat. The actions 
required by this AD are intended to prevent deformation of the fire 
extinguishing system injection tubes during a fire, which could result 
in impaired distribution of the fire extinguishing agent, failure of 
the fire extinguishing system to contain an engine fire, and subsequent 
loss of control of the helicopter.

DATES: This AD is effective October 18, 2013.
    The Director of the Federal Register approved the incorporation by 
reference of a certain document listed in this AD as of October 18, 
2013.

ADDRESSES: For service information identified in this AD, contact 
American Eurocopter Corporation, 2701 N. Forum Drive, Grand Prairie, TX 
75052; telephone (972) 641-0000 or (800) 232-0323; fax (972) 641-3775; 
or at http://www.eurocopter.com/techpub. You may review the referenced 
service information at the FAA, Office of the Regional Counsel, 
Southwest Region, 2601 Meacham Blvd., Room 663, Fort Worth, Texas 
76137.

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 AD, the foreign authority's AD, 
any incorporated-by-reference service information, the economic 
evaluation, any comments received, and other information. The street 
address for the Docket Operations Office (phone: 800-647-5527) is U.S. 
Department of Transportation, Docket Operations Office, M-30, West 
Building Ground Floor, Room W12-140, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., 
Washington, DC 20590.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Matt Wilbanks, Aviation Safety 
Engineer, Rotorcraft Certification Office, Rotorcraft Directorate, FAA, 
2601 Meacham Blvd., Fort Worth, Texas 76137; telephone (817) 222-5110; 
email matt.wilbanks@faa.gov.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Discussion

    On May 8, 2013, at 78 FR 26715, the Federal Register published our 
notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM), which proposed to amend 14 CFR 
part 39 to include an AD that would apply to ECD Model EC135P1, 
EC135P2, EC135P2+, EC135T1, EC135T2, and EC135T2+ helicopters with a 
fire extinguishing system part number (P/N) L262M1808101, P/N 
L262M1812101, or P/N L262M1812102 installed. The NPRM proposed to 
require, within 30 days, cutting out a portion of the existing fire 
extinguishing system injection tubes and replacing that portion with a 
section of new injection tubing. The proposed requirements were 
intended to prevent deformation of the fire extinguishing system 
injection tubes during a fire, which could result in impaired 
distribution of the fire extinguishing agent, failure of the fire 
extinguishing system to contain an engine fire, and subsequent loss of 
control of the helicopter.
    The NPRM was prompted by AD No. 2011-0172, dated September 7, 2011, 
issued by the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA), which is the 
Technical Agent for the Member States of the European Union. EASA 
issued AD No. 2011-0172 to correct an unsafe

[[Page 56598]]

condition for ECD Model EC 135 P1, EC 135 P2, EC 135 P2+, EC 135 T1, EC 
135 T2, EC 135 T2+, EC 635 T1, EC 635 P2+, and EC 635 T2+ helicopters 
with a single engine fire extinguishing system, P/N L262M1808101, P/N 
L262M1812101, or P/N L262M1812102, or with a dual engine fire 
extinguishing system, P/N L262M1813102, installed. EASA advises that 
the fire extinguishing system injection tubes on Model EC 135 and EC 
635 helicopters ``are not compliant with the relevant airworthiness 
requirements, because they are also forming part of the firewall.'' 
According to EASA, during an engine fire, this condition may affect the 
function of the fire extinguishing system and degrade the fire 
containment capability of the system to the extent that it is incapable 
of extinguishing an engine fire. For these reasons, EASA issued AD 
2011-0172, which requires modification of the affected injection tubes 
by removing part of the tubing and replacing it with a section of heat-
resistant injection tubing.

Comments

    We gave the public the opportunity to participate in developing 
this AD, but we did not receive any comments on the NPRM (78 FR 26715, 
May 8, 2013).

FAA's Determination

    These helicopters have been approved by the aviation authority of 
the Federal Republic of Germany and are approved for operation in the 
United States. Pursuant to our bilateral agreement with the Federal 
Republic of Germany, EASA, its technical representative, has notified 
us of the unsafe condition described in the EASA AD. We are issuing 
this AD because we evaluated all information provided by EASA and 
determined the unsafe condition exists and is likely to exist or 
develop on other helicopters of these same type designs and that air 
safety and the public interest require adopting the AD requirements as 
proposed.

Differences Between This AD and the EASA AD

    The EASA AD applies to helicopters with a dual engine fire 
extinguishing system and this AD does not because these systems are 
only installed on helicopters operated by the German Federal Police and 
are not operated in the U.S.

Related Service Information

    ECD has issued EC135 Alert Service Bulletin No. EC135-26A-003, 
Revision 2, dated December 19, 2011, which describes procedures to 
remove a section of the fire extinguishing system injection tubing and 
replace it with heat-resistant injection tubing.

Costs of Compliance

    We estimate that this AD will affect 246 helicopters of U.S. 
Registry. We estimate that operators may incur the following costs in 
order to comply with this AD. Modifying the injection tubes will 
require about 4.5 work-hours at an average labor rate of $85 per hour 
and required parts would cost about $900, for a cost of $1,282 per 
helicopter and a total cost to U.S. operators of $315,372.

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 helicopters identified in this 
rulemaking action.

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) Is not a ``significant rule'' under DOT Regulatory Policies and 
Procedures (44 FR 11034, February 26, 1979);
    (3) Will not affect intrastate aviation in Alaska to the extent 
that it justifies making a regulatory distinction; 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 an economic evaluation of the estimated costs to comply 
with this 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.

Adoption of the Amendment

    Accordingly, under the authority delegated to me by the 
Administrator, the FAA amends 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 airworthiness 
directive (AD):

2013-18-05 Eurocopter Deutschland GmbH: Amendment 39-17578; Docket 
No. FAA-2013-0398; Directorate Identifier 2011-SW-065-AD.

(a) Applicability

    This AD applies to Eurocopter Deutschland GmbH (ECD) Model 
EC135P1, EC135P2, EC135P2+, EC135T1, EC135T2, and EC135T2+ 
helicopters with a fire extinguishing system part number (P/N) 
L262M1808101, P/N L262M1812101, or P/N L262M1812102 installed, 
certificated in any category.

 (b) Unsafe Condition

    This AD defines the unsafe condition as deformation of the fire 
extinguishing system injection tubes during an engine fire, which 
could result in impaired distribution of the fire extinguishing 
agent, failure of the fire extinguishing system to contain a fire, 
and subsequent loss of control of the helicopter.

(c) Effective Date

    This AD becomes effective October 18, 2013.

(d) Compliance

    You are responsible for performing each action required by this 
AD within the specified compliance time unless it has already been 
accomplished prior to that time.

(e) Required Actions

    (1) Within 30 days, modify each fire extinguishing system 
injection tube by removing and replacing a section of the tubing in 
accordance with the Accomplishment Instructions, paragraph 3.B., of 
Eurocopter EC135 Alert Service Bulletin No. EC135-26A-003, Revision 
2, dated December 19, 2011.
    (2) Do not install an injection tube, P/N L262M1810101, P/N 
L262M1811801, or P/N L262M1809101, on any helicopter unless it has 
been modified as required by this AD.

(f) Alternative Methods of Compliance (AMOCs)

    (1) The Manager, Safety Management Group, FAA, may approve AMOCs 
for this

[[Page 56599]]

AD. Send your proposal to: Matt Wilbanks, Aviation Safety Engineer, 
Rotorcraft Certification Office, Rotorcraft Directorate, FAA, 2601 
Meacham Blvd., Fort Worth, Texas 76137; telephone (817) 222-5110; 
email matt.wilbanks@faa.gov.
    (2) For operations conducted under a 14 CFR part 119 operating 
certificate or under 14 CFR part 91, subpart K, we suggest that you 
notify your principal inspector, or lacking a principal inspector, 
the manager of the local flight standards district office or 
certificate holding district office, before operating any aircraft 
complying with this AD through an AMOC.

(g) Additional Information

    The subject of this AD is addressed in European Aviation Safety 
Agency (EASA) AD No. 2011-0172, dated September 7, 2011. You may 
view the EASA AD in the AD Docket on the internet at http://www.regulations.gov.

(h) Subject

    Joint Aircraft Service Component (JASC) Code: 2620: 
Extinguishing System.

(i) 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 the AD specifies otherwise.
    (i) Eurocopter EC135 Alert Service Bulletin No. EC135-26A-003, 
Revision 2, dated December 19, 2011.
    (ii) Reserved.
    (3) For Eurocopter service information identified in this AD, 
contact American Eurocopter Corporation, 2701 N. Forum Drive, Grand 
Prairie, TX 75052; telephone (972) 641-0000 or (800) 232-0323; fax 
(972) 641-3775; or at http://www.eurocopter.com/techpub.
    (4) You may view this service information at FAA, Office of the 
Regional Counsel, Southwest Region, 2601 Meacham Blvd., Room 663, 
Fort Worth, Texas 76137. For information on the availability of this 
material at the FAA, call (817) 222-5110.
    (5) You may also view this service information 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.

    Issued in Fort Worth, Texas, on August 27, 2013.
Kim Smith,
Directorate Manager, Rotorcraft Directorate, Aircraft Certification 
Service.
[FR Doc. 2013-22181 Filed 9-12-13; 8:45 am]
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