FAA fast-tracks Twin Commander AD

Agency sets May 29 effective date

May 15, 2013

The FAA, citing a risk of structural failure, has adopted an airworthiness directive (AD) requiring inspection of certain Twin Commander Aircraft LLC models 690, 690A, and 690B for cracking of the outer fuselage attachments, the lower wing main spar, and other components, and repair or replacement of damaged parts as necessary.

The AD, prompted by cracks discovered in six of 19 inspected aircraft, will take effect May 29. AOPA encourages members to submit comments by June 28 as provided below. The FAA could modify the AD based on comments received.

The FAA noted that a notice period prior to the AD’s effective date would be “impractical,” and that “good cause exists” for making the AD effective in less than 30 days. “This condition, if not corrected, could result in structural failure of the airplane,” the AD says.

The AD requires inspection of the outer fuselage attachments, the lower wing main spar, vertical channels, the upper picture window channels, aft cabin pressure web, external wing to fuselage fillets, and fasteners, and the repair or replacement of damaged parts as necessary; and modification of the structure with reinforced parts.

The AD sets forth inspection requirements based on time-in-service hours, with the inspections to be conducted pursuant to Part I of Twin Commander Aircraft LLC Service Bulletin 241, from Sept. 26, 2012.

The FAA estimates that 280 airplanes are affected by the AD, at a cost for compliance of $58,090 per aircraft.

Members may submit comments by June 28 online 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. Please refer to docket number FAA-2013-0393 and Directorate Identifier 2012-CE-025-AD.

Dan Namowitz

Dan Namowitz | Aviation Writer

Dan Namowitz is an aviation writer and flight instructor. He has been a pilot since 1985 and an instructor since 1990.