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2022-27-09 AIRBUS HELICOPTERS: Amendment 39-22294; Docket No. FAA-2022-1664; Project Identifier MCAI-2022-01585-R.
(a) EFFECTIVE DATE

    This airworthiness directive (AD) is effective January 30, 2023.

(b) AFFECTED ADS

    None.

(c) APPLICABILITY

    This AD applies to Airbus Helicopters  Model EC130T2 helicopters, cer-
    tificated in any category,  as  identified  in European Union Aviation
    Safety Agency (EASA) Emergency AD 2022-0251-E, dated December 14, 2022
    (EASA AD 2022-0251-E).

(d) SUBJECT

    Joint Aircraft System Component (JASC)  Code:  6510,  Tail Rotor Drive
    Shaft.

(e) UNSAFE CONDITION

    This AD was prompted by a report of a crack  in the tailboom.  The FAA
    is issuing this AD to address an excessive vibration level on the tail
    rotor drive shaft. The unsafe condition,  if not addressed,  could re-
    sult in failure of the tail rotor drive shaft  and  subsequent loss of
    yaw 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 2022-0251-E.

(h) EXCEPTIONS TO EASA AD 2022-0251-E

(1) Where EASA AD 2022-0251-E  requires  compliance  in  terms  of  flight
    hours, this AD requires using hours time-in-service.

(2) Where EASA AD 2022-0251-E  refers to its effective date,  this  AD re-
    quires using the effective date of this AD.

(3) Where EASA AD 2022-0251-E  refers  to  tail rotor  drive shaft checks,
    this AD requires tail rotor drive shaft inspections.

(4) Where paragraph (2)  of EASA AD 2022-0251-E  specifies  contacting  AH
    [Airbus Helicopters]  to  obtain  approved  instructions,  this AD re-
    quires, before further flight, reporting results to Airbus Helicopters
    and  accomplishing  corrective  action  in  accordance  with  a method
    approved by the Manager, General Aviation & Rotorcraft Section, Inter-
    national Validation Branch, FAA; or EASA;  or Airbus Helicoptersí EASA
    Design  Organization  Approval  (DOA).  If  approved  by the DOA,  the
    approval must include the DOA-authorized signature.

(5) Where paragraph (3) of EASA AD 2022-0251-E specifies reporting results
    to AH [Airbus Helicopters] within 14 days after the check, this AD re-
    quires reporting the results  at the applicable time  in paragraph (h)
    (5)(i) or (ii) of this AD.

(i) If the inspection was done  on or after the effective date of this AD:
    Submit the report within 10 days after the inspection.

(ii) If the inspection was done before the effective date of this AD: Sub-
     mit the report within 10 days after the effective date of this AD.

(6) This AD does not adopt the Remarks paragraph of EASA AD 2022-0251-E.

(i) SPECIAL FLIGHT PERMIT

    Special flight permits  may be issued in accordance with 14 CFR 21.197
    and 21.199 only to operate the helicopter  to  a  location  where  the
    first tail rotor drive shaft inspection can be performed,  provided no
    passengers are onboard.

(j) ALTERNATIVE METHODS OF COMPLIANCE (AMOCS)

(1) The Manager, International Validation Branch,  FAA,  has the authority
    to approve AMOCs for this AD,  if requested using the procedures found
    in 14 CFR 39.19. In accordance with 14 CFR 39.19, send your request to
    your principal inspector or local Flight Standards District Office, as
    appropriate. If sending information directly to the manager of the In-
    ternational Validation Branch,  send it to the attention of the person
    identified in paragraph (k) of this AD. Information may be emailed to:
    9-AVS-AIR-730-AMOC@faa.gov.

(2) Before using any approved AMOC,  notify your appropriate principal in-
    spector,  or  lacking a principal inspector,  the manager of the local
    flight standards district office/certificate holding district office.

(k) RELATED INFORMATION

    For more information about this AD,  contact  Kristi Bradley,  Program
    Manager, COS Program Management Section,  Operational  Safety  Branch,
    Compliance & Airworthiness Division,  FAA,  10101 Hillwood Pkwy., Fort
    Worth, TX 76177;  telephone (817) 222-5110; email kristin.bradley@faa.
    gov.

(l) MATERIAL INCORPORATED BY REFERENCE

(1) The Director of the Federal Register  approved  the  incorporation  by
    reference 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 this AD specifies otherwise.

(i) European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) Emergency AD 2022-0251-E,
    dated December 14, 2022.

(ii) [Reserved]

(3) For EASA AD 2022-0251-E,  contact EASA,  Konrad-Adenauer-Ufer 3, 50668
    Cologne, Germany; telephone +49 221 8999 000; email ADs@easa.europa.eu
    Internet easa.europa.eu.  You may find  the EASA material  on the EASA
    website at ad.easa.europa.eu.

(4) 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.

(5) You may view this material  that is incorporated  by reference  at the
    National Archives and Records Administration (NARA).  For  information
    on the availability of this material at NARA, email fr.inspection@nara
    .gov, or  go  to:  www.archives.gov/federalregister/cfr/ibr-locations.
    html.

Issued on January 2, 2023.  Christina Underwood,  Acting Director, Compli-
ance & Airworthiness Division, Aircraft Certification Service.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Kristi Bradley, Program Manager, COS Pro-
gram Management Section, Operational Safety Branch, Compliance & Airworth-
iness Division, FAA, 10101 Hillwood Pkwy., Fort Worth, TX 76177; telephone
(817) 222-5110; email kristin.bradley@faa.gov.
PREAMBLE 

DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION

Federal Aviation Administration

14 CFR Part 39

[Docket No. FAA-2022-1664; Project Identifier MCAI-2022-01585-R;
Amendment 39-22294; AD 2022-27-09]
RIN 2120-AA64

Airworthiness Directives; Airbus Helicopters

AGENCY: Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT.

ACTION: Final rule; request for comments.

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

SUMMARY: The FAA is adopting a new airworthiness directive (AD) for
certain Airbus Helicopters Model EC130T2 helicopters. This AD was
prompted by a crack in the tailboom. This AD requires repetitively
inspecting the vibration level on the tail rotor drive shaft and,
depending on the results, taking corrective action. This AD also
requires reporting information and prohibits installing certain rotor
drive shafts unless the inspection is done, as specified in a 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 January 30, 2023.
The Director of the Federal Register approved the incorporation by
reference of a certain publication listed in this AD as of January 30,
2023.
The FAA must receive comments on this AD by February 27, 2023.

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 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.
AD Docket: You may examine the AD docket at regulations.gov under
Docket No. FAA-2022-1664; 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 listed above.
Material Incorporated by Reference:
For EASA material that is incorporated by reference in
this final rule, contact EASA, Konrad-Adenauer-Ufer 3, 50668 Cologne,
Germany; telephone +49 221 8999 000; email ADs@easa.europa.eu; internet
easa.europa.eu. You may find the EASA material on the EASA website at
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. It is also available at
regulations.gov under Docket No. FAA-2022-1664.
Other Related Service Information: For Airbus Helicopters service
information identified in this final rule, contact Airbus Helicopters,
2701 North Forum Drive, Grand Prairie, TX 75052; telephone (972) 641-
0000 or (800) 232-0323; fax (972) 641-3775; or at airbus.com/helicopters/
services/technical-support.html. You may also view this
service information at the FAA contact information under Material
Incorporated by Reference above.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Kristi Bradley, Program Manager, COS
Program Management Section, Operational Safety Branch, Compliance &
Airworthiness Division, FAA, 10101 Hillwood Pkwy., Fort Worth, TX
76177; telephone (817) 222-5110; email kristin.bradley@faa.gov.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Comments Invited

The FAA invites you to send any written data, views, or arguments
about this final rule. Send your comments to an address listed under
ADDRESSES. Include ``Docket No. FAA-2022-1664; Project Identifier MCAI-
2022-01585-R'' at the beginning of your comments. The most helpful
comments reference a specific portion of the final rule, explain the
reason for any recommended change, and include supporting data. The FAA
will consider all comments received by the closing date and may amend
this final rule because of those 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, to
regulations.gov, including any personal information you provide. The
agency will also post a report summarizing each substantive verbal
contact received about this final rule.

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 AD 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 AD, 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 AD. Submissions containing CBI should be sent to Kristi
Bradley, Program Manager, COS Program Management Section, Operational
Safety Branch, Compliance & Airworthiness Division, FAA, 10101 Hillwood
Pkwy., Fort Worth, TX 76177; telephone (817) 222-5110; 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.

Background

EASA, which is the Technical Agent for the Member States of the
European Union, has issued EASA Emergency AD 2022-0251-E, dated
December 14, 2022 (EASA AD 2022-0251-E), to correct an unsafe condition
on Airbus Helicopters Model EC 130 T2 helicopters with modification
079809 incorporated in production.
This AD was prompted by a report of a crack in the tailboom. During
the preceding flight, the pilot experienced a humming sound and
vibrations in the pedals. A subsequent balancing of the tail rotor
drive shaft revealed an excessive vibration level. The FAA is issuing
this AD to address an excessive vibration level on the tail rotor drive
shaft, which could result in failure of the tail rotor drive shaft and
subsequent loss of yaw control of the helicopter.
You may examine EASA AD 2022-0251-E in the AD docket at
regulations.gov under Docket No. FAA-2022-1664.

Related Service Information Under 1 CFR Part 51

EASA AD 2022-0251-E requires repetitively checking the balancing of
the tail rotor drive shaft by measuring the vibration level. Depending
on the results, EASA AD 2022-0251-E requires contacting Airbus
Helicopters to obtain approved instructions, accomplishing those
instructions, and reporting the results to Airbus Helicopters. Lastly,
EASA AD 2022-0251-E prohibits installing certain part-numbered tail
rotor drive shafts on any helicopter unless its requirements are met.
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 Airbus Helicopters Emergency Alert Service
Bulletin No. EC130-05A042, Revision 0, dated December 14, 2022. This
service information specifies procedures for measuring the vibration
level on the tail rotor drive shaft and reporting the results to Airbus
Helicopters.
The FAA also reviewed AMM Task 65-11-01,5-1A, Adjustment--Balancing
of the tail rotor drive line (with the STEADY Control tuning
equipment)--Tail Drive Line POST MOD 079809 and AMM Task 65-11-01,5-1B,
Adjustment--Balancing of the tail rotor drive shaft (with the VIBREX
2000 adjustment equipment)--Tail Drive Line POST MOD 079809, both
Update 2 and dated July 3, 2022. This service information specifies
procedures for measuring the vibration level on the tail rotor drive
shaft, analyzing the results, and balancing the tail rotor drive line
or shaft.

FAA's Determination

These helicopters have been approved by EASA and are approved for
operation in the United States. Pursuant to the FAA's bilateral
agreement with the European Union, EASA, its technical representative,
has notified the FAA of the unsafe condition described in its AD. The
FAA is issuing this AD after determining that the unsafe condition
described previously is likely to exist or develop on other helicopters
of the same type design.

Requirements of This AD

This AD requires accomplishing the actions specified in EASA AD
2022-0251-E, described previously, as incorporated by reference, except
for any differences identified as exceptions in the regulatory text of
this AD and discussed under ``Differences Between this AD and the EASA
AD.''

Explanation of Required Compliance Information

In the FAA's ongoing efforts to improve the efficiency of the AD
process, the FAA developed a process to use some civil aviation
authority (CAA) ADs as the primary source of information for compliance
with requirements for corresponding FAA ADs. The FAA has been
coordinating this process with manufacturers and CAAs. As a result,
EASA AD 2022-0251-E is incorporated by reference in this FAA final
rule. This AD, therefore, requires compliance with EASA AD 2022-0251-E
in its entirety through that incorporation, except for any differences
identified as exceptions in the regulatory text of this AD. Using
common terms that are the same as the heading of a particular section
in EASA AD 2022-0251-E 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 EASA AD 2022-0251-E. Service information
referenced in EASA AD 2022-0251-E for compliance will be available at
regulations.gov under Docket No. FAA-2022-1664 after this final rule is
published.

Differences Between This AD and the EASA AD

EASA AD 2022-0251-E requires tail rotor drive shaft checks, whereas
this AD requires tail rotor drive shaft inspections because those
actions must be accomplished by persons authorized under 14 CFR 43.3.
Depending on the results of the vibration check, EASA AD 2022-0251-E
specifies contacting Airbus Helicopters to obtain approved instructions
and accomplishing those instructions, whereas this AD requires
accomplishing corrective action in accordance with a method approved by
the FAA, EASA, or Airbus Helicopters' EASA Design Organization
Approval. For inspection results of more than 1.4 inch per second, this
AD requires reporting those results to Airbus Helicopters before
further flight, whereas EASA AD 2022-0251-E is unclear about reporting
that information. For inspection results of 1.4 or less inch per
second, EASA AD 2022-0251-E specifies to report results within 14 days,
whereas this AD requires reporting those results within 10 days.

Interim Action

The FAA considers this AD interim action. If final action is later
identified, the FAA might consider further rulemaking then.

Justification for Immediate Adoption and Determination of the Effective
Date


Section 553(b)(3)(B) of the Administrative Procedure Act (APA) (5
U.S.C. 551 et seq.) authorizes agencies to dispense with notice and
comment procedures for rules when the agency, for ``good cause,'' finds
that those procedures are ``impracticable, unnecessary, or contrary to
the public interest.'' Under this section, an agency, upon finding good
cause, may issue a final rule without providing notice and seeking
comment prior to issuance. Further, section 553(d) of the APA
authorizes agencies to make rules effective in less than thirty days,
upon a finding of good cause.
An unsafe condition exists that requires the immediate adoption of
this AD without providing an opportunity for public comments prior to
adoption. The FAA has found that the risk to the flying public
justifies foregoing notice and comment prior to adoption of this rule
because the tail rotor drive shaft is critical to the control of a
helicopter and a failure of the tail rotor drive shaft could occur
during any phase of flight without previous indication. The FAA also
has no information pertaining to how quickly the condition may
propagate to failure. In light of this and, depending how many hours
the helicopter has accumulated, for some operators the initial
inspection must be accomplished before further flight. For other
operators, the initial inspection must be accomplished before
accumulating 50 total hours time-in-service or within three months,
whichever occurs first, which is shorter than the time necessary for
the public to comment and for publication of the final rule.
Accordingly, notice and opportunity for prior public comment are
impracticable and contrary to the public interest pursuant to 5 U.S.C.
553(b)(3)(B).
In addition, the FAA finds that good cause exists pursuant to 5
U.S.C. 553(d) for making this amendment effective in less than 30 days,
for the same reasons the FAA found good cause to forego notice and
comment.

Regulatory Flexibility Act

The requirements of the Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA) do not
apply when an agency finds good cause pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 553 to adopt
a rule without prior notice and comment. Because the
FAA has determined that it has good cause to adopt this rule without
prior notice and comment, RFA analysis is not required.

Costs of Compliance

The FAA estimates that this AD affects 9 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
this AD.
Inspecting the tail rotor drive shaft takes about 4 work-hours for
an estimated cost of $340 per helicopter and $3,060 for the U.S. fleet,
per inspection cycle. Reporting information to the manufacturer takes
about 1 work-hour for an estimated cost of $85 per helicopter for each
report.
The corrective action that may be needed as a result of the
inspection could vary significantly from helicopter to helicopter. The
FAA has no data to determine the costs to accomplish the corrective
action or the number of helicopters that may require corrective action.

Paperwork Reduction Act

A federal agency may not conduct or sponsor, and a person is not
required to respond to, nor shall a person be subject to penalty for
failure to comply with a collection of information subject to the
requirements of the Paperwork Reduction Act unless that collection of
information displays a currently valid OMB Control Number. The OMB
Control Number for this information collection is 2120-0056. Public
reporting for this collection of information is estimated to be
approximately 1 hour per response, including the time for reviewing
instructions, searching existing data sources, gathering and
maintaining the data needed, and completing and reviewing the
collection of information. All responses to this collection of
information are mandatory. Send comments regarding this burden estimate
or any other aspect of this collection of information, including
suggestions for reducing this burden, to: Information Collection
Clearance Officer, Federal Aviation Administration, 10101 Hillwood
Parkway, Fort Worth, TX 76177-1524.

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

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, I certify that this AD:
(1) Is not a ``significant regulatory action'' under Executive
Order 12866, and
(2) Will not affect intrastate aviation in Alaska.

List of Subjects in 14 CFR Part 39

Air transportation, Aircraft, Aviation safety, Incorporation by
reference, Safety.

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

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: