The FAA has responded to an AOPA letter asking for an explanation of a June 17 airworthiness directive (AD) that addresses the Cessna 150/152 rudder assembly. The FAA issued AD 2009-10-09 after a follow-on investigation of a fatal spin accident in Canada and another in the United States. The FAA determined that under certain circumstances it was possible to move the rudder past the rudder stops and cause contact between the rudder and elevator, which could affect spin recovery.
To minimize the impact of the AD on the 17,000 aircraft owners as much as possible, AOPA asked the that FAA provide a detailed account of its AD process, delay the AD’s effective date, and allow owners to fabricate a placard required under one of the compliance options rather than face the expense of hiring a mechanic.
“AOPA will continue to work with the FAA to minimize the effects of this AD on Cessna 150 and 152 owners. We have presented a compliance option to the FAA that is extremely low cost and addresses the FAA’s concerns,” said Leisha Bell, AOPA director of aircraft and environment.
The AD offers two options for compliance: installation of a rudder-stop modification kit or placarding the airplane. The placard must say, “Intentional spins and other acrobatic/aerobatic maneuvers prohibited per AD 2009-10-09.” An entry in the airplane’s pilots operating handbook is also required if this much less expensive option is chosen.
Compliance with the AD must come within 100 hours time in service after June 17 or within the next 12 months after June 17—whichever occurs first.
Representatives in AOPA’s government affairs division will continue to work with the FAA in pursuing the owner-made placard option.
For more background on the AD, read AOPA’s previous article.