FAA Expands Skyhawk AD

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The FAA wants to expand an airworthiness directive that affects the Cessna 172 fleet to include another 768 airplanes. A proposed AD published on Monday directs operators to inspect the fuel return line assembly for chafing and clearance, and if necessary to replace and adjust the line. The AD aims to prevent leaks that could lead to fuel vapors or fire in the cabin, and will cost operators up to $250 per aircraft. The original AD was issued in 2008. Since then, the FAA said, it has had a report of chafing found in an aircraft with a serial number that was not part of that AD.

The inspection must be completed within 100 hours time in service after the AD is made final, or within 12 months of that date, whichever comes first. The FAA is accepting comments on the proposal until Dec. 29. The chafing apparently occurs when the right rudder pedal is fully actuated, causing the steering tube assembly to rub against the fuel line, according to the FAA.