NSW rail bridge saga referred to ICAC

<p>New South Wales coordinator general of rail Vince Graham has referred the processes leading to the closure of the Menangle Bridge to the Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC).</p> <p>Mr Graham advised transport services minister Michael Costa on Thursday, April 17 that he believed it "impractical and inappropriate" to continue his investigation into the closure of the bridge.</p> <p>The bridge, which is on the trunk line between Sydney and Melbourne, has remained closed to all freight and passenger traffic since March 27, when it was revealed the 19 th-Century wrought iron bridge had sustained serious cracks and other structural wear and tear.</p> <p>The rail industry and the NSW opposition have raised concerns over an apparent three weeks between a Rail Infrastructure Corporation-ordered inspection report recommending closure and the decision to shut the bridge &#8211 a period which coincided with the NSW state election.</p> <p>Mr Graham said his decision to terminate the inquiry related to "internal Rail Infrastructure Corporation management processes."</p> <p>"Having reached this decision, I have sought and received advice from the Acting Crown Solicitor on an appropriate course of action, and on the basis of that advice I have referred all documentation and material on this matter to the ICAC," Mr Graham stated in his letter to Mr Costa.</p> <p>Mr Costa said Mr Graham would continue his audit of wrought iron bridges and other nominated structures.</p> <p>Rail safety regulator Kent Donaldson is assessing ongoing repair work to Menangle Bridge. </p> <br />