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New AD proposed for certain Cessna 120 and 140 models

Reports of seat belt center bracket failures prompted the FAA to propose a new airworthiness directive (AD) that will affect certain Cessna Model 120 and 140 aircraft.

A Cessna 140A is parked on the ramp at Triple Tree Aerodrome in Woodruff, South Carolina, near Greenville. Photo by David Tulis.

Affected aircraft will include Textron Aviation Inc. (type certificate previously held by Cessna Aircraft Co.) Model 120 and 140 airplanes, serial numbers 10070 through 15075, and all model 140A airplanes.

The proposed AD requires determining if the seat belt center bracket material is made of steel and replacing any non-steel brackets. The FAA estimates 2,033 airplanes of U.S. registry will be affected with an estimated cost of $142.75 per airplane to replace any non-steel seat belt center brackets.

A Special Airworthiness Information Bulletin recommending operators replace aluminum brackets with steel brackets was released in 2015 following a 2014 fatal accident when a Cessna Model 140 aircraft nosed over on landing, and the seat belt center bracket failed. An analysis of the bracket determined the part failed due to overstress.

This AD comes at the heels of a 2020 fatal nose-over accident during an aborted takeoff and four additional occurrences of seat belt center bracket failures on Model 120 and 140 aircraft resulting in two occupant injuries.

“Analysis of the failures determined the original aluminum seat belt center bracket does not have sufficient strength and can fail due to overstress during incidents and accidents.” Both the aluminum and steel brackets share the same part number (part number 0425132).  

Comments on the proposed AD may be submitted 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 include Docket No. FAA-2022-0014; Project Identifier AD-2021-00114-A at the beginning of your comments.

Niki Britton

eMedia Content Producer
eMedia Content Producer Niki Britton joined AOPA in 2021. She is a private pilot who enjoys flying her 1969 Cessna 182 and taking aerial photographs.
Topics: Advocacy, Aircraft Regulation, Ownership

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