DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION
Federal Aviation Administration
14 CFR Part 39
[Docket No. FAA-2021-0383; Project Identifier 2018-SW-005-AD; Amendment
39-21671; AD 2021-16-09]
Airworthiness Directives; Leonardo S.p.a. Helicopters
AGENCY: Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT.
ACTION: Final rule.
SUMMARY: The FAA is adopting a new airworthiness directive (AD)
certain Leonardo S.p.a. Model AW189 helicopters. This AD was prompted
by corrosion on the inlet check valve banjo fitting of emergency
flotation system (EFS) float assemblies. This AD requires visually
inspecting each banjo fitting installed on an affected EFS float
assembly, and depending on the results, removing the banjo fitting from
service. This AD also requires applying corrosion inhibiting compound
and prohibits installing an affected EFS float assembly unless certain
requirements have been accomplished as specified in a European Aviation
Safety Agency (now European Union Aviation Safety Agency) (EASA) AD,
which is incorporated by reference. The FAA is issuing this AD to
address the unsafe condition on these products.
DATES: This AD is effective October 13, 2021.
The Director of the Federal Register approved the incorporation by
reference of a certain publication listed in this AD as of October 13,
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. For Aero Sekur and Leonardo Helicopters
service information identified in this final rule, contact Leonardo
S.p.A. Helicopters, Emanuele Bufano, Head of Airworthiness, Viale
G.Agusta 520, 21017 C.Costa di Samarate (Va) Italy; telephone +39-0331-
225074; fax +39-0331-229046; or at https://customerportal.leonardocompany.
com/en-US/. 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. It
is also available in the AD docket at https://www.regulations.gov by
searching for and locating Docket No. FAA-2021-0383.
Examining the AD Docket
You may examine the AD docket at https://www.regulations.gov by
searching for and locating Docket No. FAA-2021-0383; 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: Kristi Bradley, Program Manager,
Program Management Section, Operational Safety Branch, Compliance &
Airworthiness Division, FAA, 10101 Hillwood Pkwy., Fort Worth, TX
76177; telephone (817) 222-5110; email firstname.lastname@example.org.
EASA, which is the Technical Agent for the Member States of the
European Union, has issued a series of ADs, the most recent being EASA
AD 2018-0006, dated January 10, 2018 (EASA AD 2018-0006), to correct an
unsafe condition for Leonardo S.p.A. Helicopters (formerly Finmeccanica
S.p.A., AgustaWestland S.p.A.) Model AW189 helicopters with certain
part-numbered and serial-numbered Aero Sekur EFS float assemblies
installed, except those float assemblies marked with SB-189-25-004.
EASA initially issued EASA AD 2017-0256, dated December 22, 2017 (EASA
AD 2017-0256), to address the unsafe condition. EASA issued EASA AD
2018-0006 to supersede EASA AD 2017-0256 to revise the compliance time
based on the EFS float assembly condition.
The FAA issued a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) to amend 14
CFR part 39 by adding an AD that would apply to certain Leonardo S.p.a.
Model AW189 helicopters. The NPRM published in the Federal Register on
May 28, 2021 (86 FR 28714). The NPRM was prompted by corrosion on the
inlet check valve banjo fitting of EFS float assemblies. The NPRM
proposed to require visually inspecting each banjo fitting installed on
an affected EFS float assembly, and depending on the results, removing
the banjo fitting from service. The NPRM also proposed to require
applying corrosion inhibiting compound to each banjo fitting installed
on an affected EFS float assembly and prohibit installing an affected
EFS float assembly unless the banjo fitting inspection, banjo fitting
replacement, and corrosion inhibiting compound application requirements
have been accomplished, as specified in an EASA AD.
The FAA is issuing this AD to prevent reduced inflation of an EFS
float. The unsafe condition, if not addressed, could affect the
helicopter's buoyancy during an emergency landing on water. See EASA AD
2018-0006 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.
Related Service Information Under 1 CFR Part 51
EASA AD 2018-0006 requires visually inspecting the banjo fittings
installed on an affected EFS float assembly. If there is corrosion on
banjo fitting, EASA AD 2018-0006 requires replacing the banjo fitting.
EASA AD 2018-0006 also requires applying corrosion inhibiting compound
to each banjo fitting installed on an affected EFS float assembly. EASA
AD 2018-0006 prohibits installing an affected EFS float assembly unless
the banjo fitting inspection, banjo fitting replacement, and corrosion
inhibiting compound application requirements have been accomplished.
EASA AD 2018-0006 also allows credit for actions accomplished
previously with a prior revision of the Leonardo Helicopters service
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.
Other Related Service Information
The FAA reviewed Leonardo Helicopters Alert Service Bulletin No.
189-174, original issue, dated December 22, 2017 (ASB 189-174 original
issue), and Revision A, dated January 5, 2018 (ASB 189-174 Rev A). The
FAA also reviewed Aero Sekur Service Bulletin SB-189-25-004, original
dated November 22, 2017 (SB-189-25-004), which is attached as Annex A
to ASB 189-174 original issue and ASB 189-174 Rev A.
ASB 189-174 Rev A and ASB 189-174 original issue specify the same
procedures, except the compliance time specified by ASB 189-174 Rev A
has been revised by adding affected EFS float assemblies that have been
inspected using procedures in the maintenance manual within the
previous 12 months. ASB 189-174 original issue and ASB 189-174 Rev A
specify accomplishing the Visual Inspection and Corrosion Prevention,
and Record Instruction procedures specified in SB-189-25-004. ASB 189-
174 original issue and ASB 189-174 Rev A also specify emailing
photographical evidence of each corroded banjo fitting to Leonardo
Helicopters PSE Division and returning replaced banjo fittings to
Leonardo Helicopters Customer Support Division.
SB-189-25-004 specifies procedures for cleaning and visually
inspecting each banjo fitting for evidence of corrosion. If there is
corrosion, SB-189-25-004 specifies procedures for discarding the banjo
fitting and its O-rings, and installing a new banjo fitting. SB-189-25-
004 also specifies procedures for applying corrosion inhibiting
compound (JC5A or Mastinox 6856) on all banjo fittings. When SB-189-25-
004 is accomplished, SB-189-25-004 specifies procedures for marking the
identification label of the EFS float assembly.
Differences Between This AD and the EASA AD
EASA AD 2018-0006 requires returning and discarding certain parts,
whereas this AD requires removing those parts from service instead.
Costs of Compliance
The FAA estimates that this AD affects 4 helicopters of U.S.
Registry. Labor rates are estimated at $85 per work-hour. Based on
these numbers, the FAA estimates the following costs to comply with
Inspecting the banjo fittings takes about 8.5 work-hours for an
estimated cost of $723 per helicopter and $2,892 for the U.S. fleet.
Applying corrosion inhibiting compound takes about 1.5 work-hours for
an estimated cost of $128 per helicopter and $512 for the U.S. fleet.
If required, replacing a banjo fitting takes a minimal additional
amount of time after inspecting it and parts cost about $550 for an
estimated cost of $550 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