[Federal Register Volume 61, Number 56 (Thursday, March 21, 1996)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Pages 11538-11539]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 96-6419]



-----------------------------------------------------------------------


DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION
14 CFR Part 39

[Docket No. 94-SW-16-AD; Amendment 39-9541, AD 96-06-04]


Airworthiness Directives; Bell Helicopter Textron, A Division of 
Textron Canada, Ltd. Model 206A and 206B Helicopters

AGENCY: Federal Aviation Administration, DOT.

ACTION: Final rule.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

SUMMARY: This amendment supersedes an existing airworthiness directive 
(AD), applicable to Bell Helicopter Textron, A Division of Textron 
Canada, Ltd., (BHTC) Model 206A and 206B helicopters, that currently 
requires an inspection of the main transmission input driveshaft 
assembly (driveshaft) at intervals of 300 hours time-in-service (TIS); 
the application of a zinc chromate primer inspection visual aid; and, 
daily visual checks of the driveshaft. This amendment requires 
inspections of the driveshaft at intervals of 300 hours TIS; the 
application of a self-adhesive temperature indicator visual inspection 
aid; and, preflight visual owner/operator (pilot) checks of the 
driveshaft. This amendment is prompted by recent studies that indicate 
self-adhesive temperature indicators are a more reliable means of 
detecting overheat conditions on grease-lubricated couplings than the 
zinc chromate primers currently in use. The actions specified by this 
AD are intended to prevent failure of the driveshaft due to coupling 
wear or overheating, which could result in loss of power to the main 
rotor and a subsequent forced emergency landing.

DATES: Effective April 25, 1996.
    The incorporation by reference of certain publications listed in 
the regulations is approved by the Director of the Federal Register as 
of April 25, 1996.

ADDRESSES: The service information referenced in this AD may be 
obtained from BHTC, 12,800 Rue de l'Avenir, Mirabel, Quebec, Canada 
J7J1R4, ATTN: Product Support Engineering Light Helicopters. This 
information may be examined at the FAA, Office of the Assistant Chief 
Counsel, 2601 Meacham Blvd., Room 663, Fort Worth, Texas; or at the 
Office of the Federal Register, 800 North Capitol Street NW., suite 
700, Washington, DC.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Mr. Jurgen Priester, Aerospace 
Engineer, Rotorcraft Certification Office, Rotorcraft Directorate, FAA, 
Fort Worth, Texas 76193-0170, telephone (817) 222-5159; fax (817) 222-
5959.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: A proposal to amend part 39 of the Federal 
Aviation Regulations (14 CFR part 39) by superseding AD 81-04-08, 
Amendment 39-4037 (46 FR 12469, February 17, 1981), which is applicable 
to BHTC Model 206A and 206B helicopters, was published in the Federal 
Register on September 8, 1995 (60 FR 46790). That action proposed to 
require inspections of the driveshaft at intervals of 300 hours TIS; 
the application of a self-adhesive visual over-temperature indicator; 
and, preflight visual checks of the driveshaft. The checks described in 
the proposal (before the first flight of each day) may be performed by 
an owner/operator (pilot), but must be entered into the aircraft 
records showing compliance with the preflight check requirements of 
this AD in accordance with sections 43.11 and 91.417(a)(2)(v) of the 
Federal Aviation Regulations. The notice proposed to allow a pilot to 
perform these checks because they involve only a visual check for 
grease leakage, overheating, and security of the clamps and bolts used 
to attach the driveshaft to transmission and engine couplings. These 
checks can be performed equally well by a pilot or a mechanic. They 
involve checking items similar to those items that a pilot checks 
during a preflight check. The notice proposed that a mechanic inspect 
the driveshaft and driveshaft couplings at intervals of 300 hours TIS.
    Interested persons have been afforded an opportunity to participate 
in the making of this amendment. No comments were received on the 
proposal or the FAA's determination of the cost to the public. However, 
the FAA has reorganized paragraphs (a) and (b) to separate the 
requirements of the visual checks that may be performed by the pilot 
from the required corrective actions that must be performed by a 
mechanic if certain conditions are discovered during the visual check. 
The FAA has determined that air safety and the public interest require 
the adoption of the rule as proposed with the exception of 
organizational changes noted and various editorial changes. The FAA has 
determined that these changes will neither increase the economic burden 
on any operator nor increase the scope of the AD.
    The FAA estimates that 4,312 helicopters of U.S. registry will be 
affected by this AD, that it will take approximately one and one-half 
work hours per helicopter to accomplish the required actions, and that 
the average labor rate is $60 per work hour. Required parts will be 
provided by the manufacturer at no charge, but installation materials 
will cost approximately $10 per helicopter. Based on these figures, the 
total cost impact of the AD on U.S. operators is estimated to be 
$431,200.
    The regulations adopted herein will not have substantial direct 
effects 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, in 
accordance with Executive Order 12612, it is determined that this final 
rule does not have sufficient federalism implications to warrant the 
preparation of a Federalism Assessment.
    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

    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

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

    Authority: 49 USC App. 106(g), 40113, 44701.


Sec. 39.13  [Amended]

    2. Section 39.13 is amended by removing Amendment 39-4037 (46 FR

[[Page 11539]]
12469, February 17, 1981), and by adding a new airworthiness directive 
(AD), Amendment 39-   , to read as follows:

AD 96-06-04 Bell Helicopter Textron, a Division of Textron Canada, 
Ltd.: Amendment 39-9541, Docket No. 94-SW-16-AD. Supersedes AD 81-
04-08, Amendment 39-4037.

    Applicability: Model 206A and 206B helicopters, certificated in 
any category.

    Note: 1:

    This AD applies to each helicopter identified in the preceding 
applicability provision, regardless of whether it has been modified, 
altered, or repaired in the area subject to the requirements of this 
AD. For helicopters that have been modified, altered, or repaired so 
that the performance of the requirements of this AD is affected, the 
owner/operator must use the authority provided in paragraph (e) to 
request approval from the FAA. This approval may address either no 
action, if the current configuration eliminates the unsafe 
condition, or different actions necessary to address the unsafe 
condition described in this AD. Such a request should include an 
assessment of the effect of the changed configuration on the unsafe 
condition addressed by this AD. In no case does the presence of any 
modification, alteration, or repair remove any helicopter from the 
applicability of this AD.
    Compliance: Required as indicated, unless accomplished 
previously.
    To prevent failure of the main transmission input driveshaft 
assembly (driveshaft) due to coupling wear or overheating, which 
could result in loss of power to the main rotor and a subsequent 
forced emergency landing, accomplish the following:
    (a) Before the first flight of each day after the effective date 
of this AD, visually check the driveshaft, part number (P/N) 206-
040-100-13, for: (1) grease leakage from the driveshaft couplings, 
P/N 206-040-108-005; and (2) visual damage and security of the 
clamps and bolts used to attach the driveshaft to the transmission 
and engine couplings. After compliance with paragraph (d) of this 
AD, also check the self-adhesive over-temperature indicators (over-
temperature indicators) for overheating, deterioration, debonding, 
or discoloration. The visual checks may be performed by an owner/
operator (pilot) holding at least a private pilot certificate, and 
must be entered into the aircraft records showing compliance with 
the visual check of this AD in accordance with sections 43.11 and 
91.417(a)(2)(v) of the Federal Aviation Regulations.
    (b) If any discrepancies are discovered as a result of the 
visual check performed in paragraph (a), accomplish the following 
before further flight:
    (1) If there is any grease leakage or any indications of 
overheating, disassemble and inspect the driveshaft in accordance 
with the applicable maintenance manual and replace the over-
temperature indicators in accordance with Part III of the 
Accomplishment Instructions of Bell Helicopter Textron, Inc., Alert 
Service Bulletin (ASB) No. 206-93-76, Revision B, dated September 6, 
1994.
    (2) If any ``dot'' on an over-temperature indicator has changed 
color to black, accomplish the corrective action in accordance with 
TABLE I and the accompanying Notes in ASB No. 206-93-76, Revision B, 
dated September 6, 1994.
    (3) If there are any deteriorated, debonded, or discolored over-
temperature indicator(s) that would prevent interpretation of the 
indicating ``dots'', replace those over-temperature indicator(s) in 
accordance with Part III of the Accomplishment Instructions of ASB 
No. 206-93-76, Revision B, dated September 6, 1994. If only one 
over-temperature indicator is missing, and no ``dot'' on any other 
over-temperature indicator on the same coupling is discolored or 
shows mechanical damage or degradation of the epoxy overcoating, the 
helicopter may be returned to service.
    (4) If there are any loose or damaged clamps or bolts, secure 
the loose clamps or bolts and replace the damaged clamps or bolts in 
accordance with the applicable maintenance manual.
    (c) Inspect and lubricate the driveshaft assembly, P/N 206-040-
100-13, and driveshaft couplings, P/N 206-040-108-005, in accordance 
with the helicopter's maintenance manual and according to the 
compliance schedule that follows, and thereafter, inspect and 
lubricate at intervals not to exceed 300 hours time-in-service 
(TIS):
    (1) For helicopters with 250 hours TIS or more, compliance is 
required within the next 50 hours TIS; or,
    (2) For helicopters with less than 250 hours TIS, compliance is 
required prior to attaining 300 hours TIS.
    (d) Install the over-temperature indicators at the next 300 
hours TIS driveshaft coupling inspection and lubrication in 
accordance with Part I of the Accomplishment Instructions of ASB No. 
206-93-76, Revision B, dated September 6, 1994.
    (e) An alternative method of compliance or adjustment of the 
compliance time that provides an acceptable level of safety may be 
used when approved by the Manager, Rotorcraft Certification Office, 
Rotorcraft Directorate, FAA. Operators shall submit their requests 
through an FAA Principal Maintenance Inspector, who may concur or 
comment and then send it to the Manager, Rotorcraft Certification 
Office.

    Note 2: Information concerning the existence of approved 
alternative methods of compliance with this AD, if any, may be 
obtained from the Rotorcraft Certification Office.

    (f) Special flight permits may be issued in accordance with 
sections 21.197 and 21.199 of the Federal Aviation Regulations (14 
CFR 21.197 and 21.199) to operate the helicopter to a location where 
the requirements of this AD can be accomplished.
    (g) The inspections, maintenance and installation of over-
temperature indicators shall be done in accordance with ASB No. 206-
93-76, Revision B, dated September 6, 1994. 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 Bell Helicopter Textron, A Division of Textron Canada, 
Ltd., 12,800 Rue L'Avenir, Mirabel, Quebec, Canada J7J1R4, ATTN: 
Product Support Engineering Light Helicopters. Copies may be 
inspected at the FAA, Office of the Assistant Chief Counsel, 2601 
Meacham Blvd., Room 663, Fort Worth, Texas; or at the Office of the 
Federal Register, 800 North Capitol Street, NW., suite 700, 
Washington, DC.
    (h) This amendment becomes effective on April 25, 1996.
    Issued in Fort Worth, Texas, on March 11, 1996.
Eric Bries,
Acting Manager, Rotorcraft Directorate, Aircraft Certification Service.
[FR Doc. 96-6419 Filed 3-20-96; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4910-13-U