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03Feb94 UK: BB IN PENALTY DOUBT - BRITISH RAIL TRACK REPLACEMENT.

Balfour Beatty may face hefty penalty payments after London's Marylebone Station was closed during the morning rush hour earlier this week.A British Rail tamper broke down at 4am on Monday during track replacement by Balfour Beatty as part of its pioneering Chiltern Line maintenance.The £7 million contract is the first to be won by the private sector and highlights the contractor's dependence on BR trackwork equipment.A Network SouthEast spokesman said: 'The tamper was being used by BR operators under the management of Balfour Beatty.'The tamper broke down at Kilburn, north London, resulting in Marylebone Station being out of action until 11am.A Network SouthEast spokesman said: 'There will be a full investigation before we can decide on whether there will be any penalties.'Balfour Beatty Railway Engineering was unavailable for comment.The contractor's client is set to change in April when Railtrack takes over railway infrastructure from British Rail.Railtrack is using the Chiltern Line as a pilot for the contracting-out of much of the £1 billion-a-year maintenance programme. CONSTRUCTION NEWS