© 2018 TU Delft. A comprehensive approach has been implemented in Sydney Trains railway network to control and minimize the rail degradation, especially squat defects. The popularity and severity of rail degradation were analysed, followed by the evaluation of different techniques in rail surface crack measurement. A detailed metallurgical examination on the ex-serviced rails was carried out to understand the mechanics of squat initiation and growth, and correlation between squat and presence of white etching layer on rail surface. The finite element modelling was introduced to investigate the wheel-rail contact with the consideration of white etching layer. A two-step of rail grinding strategy was proposed and commissioned.