June 10, 2011
By Dan Namowitz
AOPA submitted comments supporting the FAA’s proposed revision of an airworthiness directive (AD) on some Piper twins to eliminate a required inspection of the nose baggage door compartment interior light from the AD’s provisions.
Members can submit their own comments until July 5 on the proposed revision of AD 2009–13–06, Amendment 39–15944, applicable to Piper PA–23, PA–31, and PA–42 twins. The AD established life limits for safety-critical nose baggage door components, and required replacement of safety-critical nose baggage door components. It ordered repetitive inspection and lubrication of the nose baggage door latching mechanism and lock assembly. It was issued following several incidents and accidents in which the in-flight opening of the nose baggage door was listed as a causal factor.
AOPA reported May 25 that the FAA had proposed eliminating inspection of the baggage door compartment interior light because the light did not “impact the unsafe condition” for which the AD was issued. All other provisions of the AD would remain in effect.
“Removing this requirement does not impact safety yet relieves some of the burden the AD imposes on aircraft owners,” wrote Kristine Hartzell, AOPA manager of regulatory affairs, in formal comments submitted June 9. “AOPA is glad to see the FAA making this type of commonsense revision and encourages this type of review of other existing ADs.”
Comments may be submitted by July 5 online, by fax (202/493-2251), or by mail to U.S. Department of Transportation, Docket Operations, M–30, West Building Ground Floor Room W12–140, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE, Washington, DC 20590.
Dan Namowitz is an aviation writer and flight instructor. He has been a pilot since 1985 and an instructor since 1990.
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