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PROPOSED AD AIRBUS HELICOPTERS DEUTSCHLAND GMBH: Docket No. FAA-2020-0985; Product Identifier 2018-SW-064-AD.
(a) COMMENTS DUE DATE

    The FAA must receive comments by December 24, 2020.

(b) AFFECTED AIRWORTHINESS DIRECTIVES (ADS)

    None.

(c) APPLICABILITY

    This AD applies to Airbus Helicopters Deutschland GmbH Model  EC135P1,
    EC135T1, EC135P2,  EC135T2, EC135P2+,  EC135T2+, EC135P3,  and EC135T3
    helicopters, certificated in any category, equipped with a tail  rotor
    blade  identified  as an  affected  part in  European  Aviation Safety
    Agency  (now European  Union Aviation  Safety Agency)  (EASA) AD  2018
    -0168, dated July 27, 2018 (EASA AD 2018-0168).

(d) SUBJECT

    Joint Aircraft System Component (JASC) Code 6410, Tail Rotor Blades.

(e) REASON

    This AD was prompted by a deviation from a new manufacturing  process,
    which  resulted  in a  reduced  life limit  (service  life limit)  for
    certain tail rotor  blades. The FAA  is issuing this  AD to address  a
    tail rotor  blade remaining  in service  beyond its  life limit, which
    could result in failure of  that tail rotor blade and  subsequent loss
    of control of the helicopter.

(f) COMPLIANCE

    Comply with this AD within the compliance times specified,  unless al-
    ready done.

(g) REQUIREMENTS

    Except as specified in paragraph (h)  of this AD:  Comply with all re-
    quired actions and compliance times specified in,  and  in  accordance
    with, EASA AD 2018-0168.

(h) EXCEPTIONS TO EASA AD 2018-0168

(1) Where EASA AD 2018-0168 refers to its effective date, this AD requires
    using the effective date of this AD.

(2) The "Remarks" section of EASA AD 2018-0168 does not apply to this AD.

(3) Where EASA AD 2018-0168 refers to flight hours (FH),  this AD requires
    using hours time-in-service.

(i) ALTERNATIVE METHODS OF COMPLIANCE (AMOCS)

    The Manager,  Rotorcraft Standards Branch, FAA,  may approve AMOCs for
    this AD.  Send your proposal to: Manager, Rotorcraft Standards Branch,
    FAA, 10101 Hillwood Pkwy, Fort Worth, TX 76177; telephone 817-222-5110
    email 9-ASW-FTW-AMOC-Requests@faa.gov.

(j) RELATED INFORMATION

(1) For EASA AD 2018-0168, 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. You may view
    this material at  the FAA, Office  of the Regional  Counsel, Southwest
    Region, 10101 Hillwood Pkwy., Room  6N-321, Fort Worth, TX 76177.  For
    information on the availability of this material at the FAA, call  817
    -222-5110. This material may be found in the AD docket on the internet
    at https://www.regulations.gov  by searching  for and  locating Docket
    No. FAA-2020-0985.

(2) For more information about this AD,  contact Kristin Bradley, Aviation
    Safety Engineer,  International Validation Branch,  General Aviation &
    Rotorcraft Unit, FAA, 10101 Hillwood Pkwy, Fort Worth, TX 76177; tele-
    phone 817 222 5485; email Kristin.Bradley@faa.gov.

Issued  on  November 2, 2020.  Gaetano A. Sciortino,  Deputy Director  for
Strategic  Initiatives,  Compliance  &  Airworthiness  Division,  Aircraft
Certification Service.

DATES: The FAA must receive comments  on this proposed AD  by December 24,
2020.
PREAMBLE 

DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION

Federal Aviation Administration

14 CFR Part 39

[Docket No. FAA-2020-0985; Product Identifier 2018-SW-064-AD]
RIN 2120-AA64

Airworthiness Directives; Airbus Helicopters Deutschland GmbH

AGENCY: Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT.

ACTION: Notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM).

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

SUMMARY: The FAA proposes to adopt a new airworthiness directive (AD)
for certain Airbus Helicopters Deutschland GmbH Model EC135P1, EC135T1,
EC135P2, EC135T2, EC135P2+, EC135T2+, EC135P3, and EC135T3 helicopters.
This proposed AD was prompted by a deviation from a new manufacturing
process, which resulted in a reduced life limit (service life limit)
for certain tail rotor blades. This proposed AD would require a reduced
life limit for those tail rotor blades and require a new life limit for
certain other tail rotor blades, as specified in a European Aviation
Safety Agency (EASA) AD, which will be incorporated by reference. The
FAA is proposing this AD to address the unsafe condition on these
products.

DATES: The FAA must receive comments on this proposed AD by December
24, 2020.

ADDRESSES: You may send comments, using the procedures found in 14 CFR
11.43 and 11.45, by any of the following methods:

Federal eRulemaking Portal: Go to https://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: Deliver to Mail address above between 9
a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays.

For material incorporated by reference (IBR) in this AD, contact
the EASA, 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, Office of the
Regional Counsel, Southwest Region, 10101 Hillwood Pkwy., Room 6N-321,
Fort Worth, TX 76177. For information on the availability of this material
at the FAA, call 817-222-5110. It is also available in the AD docket on
the internet at https://www.regulations.gov by searching for and locating
Docket No. FAA-2020-0985.

Examining the AD Docket

You may examine the AD docket on the internet at https://www.regulations.
gov by searching for and locating Docket No. FAA-2020-0985;
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 NPRM, any comments received, and other information. The street
address for Docket Operations is listed above. Comments will be
available in the AD docket shortly after receipt.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Kristin Bradley, Aviation Safety
Engineer, International Validation Branch, General Aviation &
Rotorcraft Unit, FAA, 10101 Hillwood Pkwy., Fort Worth, TX 76177;
telephone 817-222-5485; email Kristin.Bradley@faa.gov.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Comments Invited

The FAA invites you to participate in this rulemaking by submitting
written comments, data, or views about this proposal. The most helpful
comments reference a specific portion of the proposal, explain the
reason for any recommended change, and include supporting data. To
ensure the docket does not contain duplicate comments, commenters
should submit only one copy of the comments. Send your comments to an
address listed under the ADDRESSES section. Include "Docket No. FAA
2020-0985; Product Identifier 2018-SW-064-AD" at the beginning of your
comments.

Except for Confidential Business Information (CBI) as described in
the following paragraph, and other information as described in 14 CFR
11.35, the FAA will post all comments received, without change, as well
as a report summarizing each substantive public contact with FAA
personnel concerning this proposed rulemaking. Before acting on this
proposal, the FAA will consider all comments received by the closing
date for comments. The FAA will consider comments filed after the
comment period has closed if it is possible to do so without incurring
expense or delay. The FAA may change this NPRM because of those
comments.

Confidential Business Information

CBI is commercial or financial information that is both customarily
and actually treated as private by its owner. Under the Freedom of
Information Act (FOIA) (5 U.S.C. 552), CBI is exempt from public
disclosure. If your comments responsive to this NPRM contain commercial
or financial information that is customarily treated as private, that
you actually treat as private, and that is relevant or responsive to
this NPRM, it is important that you clearly designate the submitted
comments as CBI. Please mark each page of your submission containing
CBI as "PROPIN." The FAA will treat such marked submissions as
confidential under the FOIA, and they will not be placed in the public
docket of this NPRM. Submissions containing CBI should be sent to
Kristin Bradley, Aviation Safety Engineer, International Validation
Branch, General Aviation & Rotorcraft Unit, FAA, 10101 Hillwood Pkwy.,
Fort Worth, TX 76177; telephone 817-222-5485; email
Kristin.Bradley@faa.gov. Any commentary that the FAA receives that is
not specifically designated as CBI will be placed in the public docket
for this rulemaking.

Discussion

The EASA (now European Union Aviation Safety Agency), which is the
Technical Agent for the Member States of the European Union, has issued
EASA AD 2018-0168, dated July 27, 2018 (EASA AD 2018-0168) (also
referred to as the Mandatory Continuing Airworthiness Information, or
the MCAI), to correct an unsafe condition for all Airbus Helicopters
Deutschland GmbH Model EC135 P1, EC135 P2, EC135 P2+, EC135 P3, EC135
T1, EC135 T2, EC135 T2+, EC135 T3, EC635 P2+, EC635 P3, EC635 T1, EC635
T2+ and EC635 T3 helicopters. Model EC635 P2+, EC635 P3, EC635 T1, and
EC635 T3 helicopters are not certificated by the FAA and are not
included on the U.S. type certificate data sheet; this proposed AD
therefore does not include those helicopters in the applicability.
Model EC635 T2+ helicopters are also not certificated by the FAA and
are not included on the U.S. type certificate data sheet except where
the U.S. type certificate data sheet explains that the Model EC635T2+
helicopter having serial number 0858 was converted from Model EC635T2+
to Model EC135T2+; this proposed AD therefore does not include Model
EC635 T2+ helicopters in the applicability.

This proposed AD was prompted by a deviation from a new
manufacturing process, which resulted in a reduced life limit (service
life limit) for certain tail rotor blades. The FAA is proposing this AD
to address a tail rotor blade remaining in service beyond its life
limit, which could result in failure of that tail rotor blade and
subsequent loss of control of the helicopter. See the MCAI for
additional background information.

Related Service Information Under 1 CFR Part 51

EASA AD 2018-0168 requires a reduced service life of certain tail
rotor blades and requires a new service life limit for certain other
tail rotor blades (affected parts that have been re-identified).

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.

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 the bilateral agreement with the State of Design Authority, the FAA
has been notified of the unsafe condition described in the MCAI
referenced above. The FAA is proposing this AD because the FAA
evaluated all the relevant information and determined the unsafe
condition described previously is likely to exist or develop in other
products of the same type design.

Proposed AD Requirements

This proposed AD would require accomplishing the actions specified
in EASA AD 2018-0168, described previously, as incorporated by
reference, except for any differences identified as exceptions in the
regulatory text of this proposed AD.

Explanation of Required Compliance Information

In the FAA's ongoing efforts to improve the efficiency of the AD
process, the FAA initially worked with Airbus and EASA to develop a
process to use certain EASA ADs as the primary source of information
for compliance with requirements for corresponding FAA ADs. The FAA has
since coordinated with other manufacturers and civil aviation
authorities (CAAs) to use this process. As a result, EASA AD 2018-0168
will be incorporated by reference in the FAA final rule. This proposed
AD would, therefore, require compliance with EASA AD 2018-0168 in its
entirety, through that incorporation, except for any differences identi-
fied as exceptions in the regulatory text of this proposed AD. Using
common terms that are the same as the heading of a particular section in
the EASA AD does not mean that operators need comply only with that
section. For example, where the AD requirement refers to "all required
actions and compliance times," compliance with this AD requirement is not
limited to the section titled "Required Action(s) and Compliance Time(s)"
in the EASA AD. Service information specified in EASA AD 2018-0168 that is
required for compliance with EASA AD 2018-0168 will be available on the
internet at https://www.regulations.gov by searching for and locating
Docket No. FAA-2020-0985 after the FAA final rule is published.

Costs of Compliance

The FAA estimates that this proposed AD affects 345 helicopters of
U.S. registry. The FAA estimates the following costs to comply with
this proposed AD:

Estimated Costs for Required Actions

Labor cost
Parts cost
Cost per product
Cost on U.S. operators
1 work-hour x $85 per hour = $85
$3,900
$3,985
$1,374,825

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.

Regulatory Findings

The FAA 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) 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.

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


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]


2. The FAA amends Sec. 39.13 by adding the following new airworthiness
directive: