DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION
Federal Aviation Administration
14 CFR Part 39
[Docket No. FAA-2021-0016; Project Identifier 2019-SW-114-AD; Amendment
39-21567; AD 2021-11-05]
Airworthiness Directives; Airbus Helicopters
AGENCY: Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT.
ACTION: Final rule.
SUMMARY: The FAA is adopting a new airworthiness directive (AD)
Airbus Helicopters Model EC225LP helicopters. This AD was prompted by
reports of an oil leak from the main gearbox (MGB) during engine start
up. This AD requires modifying and performing subsequent repetitive
function testing of the MGB emergency lubrication (EMLUB) system as
specified in a European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) AD, which
is incorporated by reference (IBR). The FAA is issuing this AD to
address the unsafe condition on these products.
DATES: This AD is effective July 12, 2021.
The Director of the Federal Register approved the incorporation by
reference of a certain publication listed in this AD as of July 12,
ADDRESSES: For material incorporated by reference (IBR) in this
contact the EASA, Konrad-Adenauer-Ufer 3, 50668 Cologne, Germany;
telephone +49 221 8999 000; email ADs@easa.europa.eu; internet
www.easa.europa.eu. You may find this material on the EASA website at
https://ad.easa.europa.eu. You may view this service information 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 on the internet at https://www.regulations.gov by
searching for and locating Docket No. FAA-2021-0016.
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-2021-
0016; 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 final rule, any comments received, and other information. The
address for Docket Operations is U.S. Department of Transportation,
Docket Operations, M-30, West Building Ground Floor, Room W12-140, 1200
New Jersey Avenue SE, Washington, DC 20590.
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Hal Jensen, Aerospace Engineer,
Operational Safety Branch, FAA, 950 L'Enfant Plaza N SW, Washington, DC
20024; telephone (202) 267-9167; email email@example.com.
EASA, which is the Technical Agent for the Member States of the
European Union, has issued EASA AD 2016-0232, dated November 22, 2016
(EASA AD 2016-0232), to correct an unsafe condition for Airbus
Helicopters Model EC 225 LP helicopters. EASA later issued EASA AD
2016-0232R1, dated December 12, 2019 (EASA AD 2016-0232R1), to revise
EASA AD 2016-0232.
The FAA issued a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) to amend 14
CFR part 39 by adding an AD that would apply to all Airbus Helicopters
Model EC225LP helicopters. The NPRM published in the Federal Register
on March 15, 2021 (86 FR 14281). The NPRM was prompted by reports of
oil leaks during engine starting, originating from the MGB. The NPRM
proposed to require modifying and repetitively functional testing the
MGB EMLUB system, and if there is a discrepancy, accomplishing
corrective action(s). Accomplishing any corrective action(s) does not
constitute terminating action for the repetitive functional tests, as
specified in an EASA AD.
The FAA is issuing this AD to address inadvertent opening of the P
2.4 valve of the MGB EMLUB system, which results from MGB
pressurization by compressed air produced by the engine during starting
in response to a signal from the EMLUB electronic control card. See
EASA AD 2016-0232R1 for additional background information.
Discussion of Final Airworthiness Directive
The FAA gave the public the opportunity to participate in
developing this final rule. The FAA received no comments on the NPRM or
on the determination of the cost to the public.
The FAA reviewed the relevant data and determined that air safety
and the public interest require adopting this final rule as proposed,
except for minor editorial changes. The FAA has determined that these
minor changes are consistent with the intent that was proposed in the
NPRM for addressing the unsafe condition and do not add any additional
burden upon the public than was already proposed in the NPRM.
Related Service Information Under 1 CFR Part 51
EASA AD 2016-0232R1 requires modifying the electrical control
circuit of the MGB EMLUB system. After modifying, EASA AD 2016-0232R1
requires a repetitive functional test of the MGB EMLUB system, and if
there is a discrepancy, accomplishing corrective action(s).
Accomplishing any corrective action(s) does not constitute terminating
action for the repetitive functional tests.
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.
Differences Between This AD and the EASA AD
Where EASA AD 2016-0232R1 refers to December 6, 2016 (the effective
date of EASA AD 2016-0232), this AD requires using the effective date
of this final rule. EASA AD 2016-0232R1 allows an additional interval
margin of 225 flight hours (FH), while this AD does not. Where the
service information referenced in EASA AD 2016-0232R1 requires
contacting Airbus Helicopters for corrective action, this AD requires
accomplishing the corrective action using a method approved by the
Manager, Strategic Policy Rotorcraft Section, FAA.
Costs of Compliance
The FAA estimates that this AD affects 24 helicopters of U.S.
Registry. Labor rates are estimated at $85 per work-hour. Based on
these numbers, the FAA estimates that operators may incur the following
costs in order to comply with this AD.
Modifying the electrical control circuit of the MGB EMLUB system
takes about 22 work-hours and parts cost about $1,592 for an estimated
cost of $3,462 per helicopter and $83,088 for the U.S. fleet.
Functional testing the EMLUB system takes about 12 work-hours for
an estimated cost of $1,020 per helicopter and $24,480 for U.S. fleet,
per testing cycle. If the electrical functional test results in a need
to replace the lubrication printed circuit board, the replacement time
takes about 2 work-hours and parts cost about $5,150 for an estimated
cost of $5,320 per helicopter.
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.
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
(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
Accordingly, under the authority delegated to me by the
Administrator, the FAA amends 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