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Tue, Feb 01, 2022

AD: Airbus Helicopters

AD 2022-01-01 Prompted (By) A Report Of Increased Vibration During Flight

The FAA is adopting a new airworthiness directive (AD) for all Airbus Helicopters Model AS350B, AS350BA, AS350B1, AS350B2, AS350B3, AS350D, EC130B4, and EC130T2 helicopters; AS355E, AS355F, AS355F1, AS355F2, AS355N, and AS355NP helicopters; and Model SA-365C1, SA-365C2, SA-365N, SA-365N1, AS-365N2, and AS 365 N3 helicopters.

This AD was prompted a report of increased vibration during flight. This AD requires the application of alignment markings on, and repetitive inspections of, the main rotor (MR) pitch rod upper links and, depending on findings, the accomplishment of applicable corrective actions, 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. This AD is effective March 7, 2022.

Supplementary Information: EASA, which is the Technical Agent for the Member States of the European Union, has  issued EASA AD 2021-0048, dated February 16, 2021 (EASA AD 2021-0048), to correct an unsafe condition for Airbus Helicopters (formerly Eurocopter, Eurocopter France, Aérospatiale) Model AS 350 B, AS 350 BA, AS 350 BB, AS 350 B1, AS 350 B2, AS 350 B3, AS 350 D, EC 130 B4, and EC 130 T2 helicopters; Model AS 355 E, AS 355 F, AS 355 F1, AS 355 F2, AS 355 N, and AS 355 NP helicopters; and Model SA 365 C1, SA 365 C2, SA 365 C3, SA 365 N, SA 365 N1, AS 365 N2, and AS 365 N3 helicopters; all serial numbers. Model AS 350 BB and SA 365 C3 helicopters are not certificated by the FAA and are not included on the U.S. type certificate data sheet; this AD therefore does not include those helicopters in the applicability.

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 AS350B, AS350BA, AS350B1, AS350B2, AS350B3, AS350D, EC130B4, and EC130T2 helicopters; Model AS355E, AS355F, AS355F1, AS355F2, AS355N, and AS355NP helicopters; and Model SA-365C1, SA-365C2, SA-365N,  SA365N1, AS-365N2, and AS 365 N3 helicopters. The NPRM published in the Federal Register on October 29, 2021 (86 FR 59892). The NPRM was prompted by a report of increased vibration during flight. The NPRM proposed to require the application of alignment markings on, and repetitive inspections of, the MR pitch rod upper links and, depending on findings, the accomplishment of applicable corrective actions, as specified in EASA AD 2021-0048.

The FAA is issuing this AD to address loss of tightening torque of the screws connecting the MR pitch rods to the horns of the upper links. This condition, if not addressed, could result in loss of one or more MR pitch rod upper links, possibly resulting in loss of control of the helicopter. See EASA AD 2021-0048 for additional background information.

FMI: www.regulations.gov

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