MORNING RUSH: news, sport, weather, traffic and online buzz

8.30am That's it from us this morning. The Rush will be back tomorrow from 6am. 

8.25am STRANGE BUT TRUE Sharknado star Tara Reid has claimed a sharknado ‘‘actually can happen.’’ Oh Tara.

8.20am MUSIC NEWS Ricky Martin’s One World Tour went on-sale last week. Tickets are still available here.

8.15am A weightlifter from Papua New Guinea has denied an allegation of sexual assult that led to him being detained by police in Glasgow but still allowed to compete in the Commonwealth Games on Sunday.

8.10am And we're back - false alarm.

8.05am Fire alarm! Back soon, I hope.

8am Good morning if you're just joining us. An update: 

WEATHER We're headed for a mostly sunny one, with winds northwest to southwesterly, 15 to 25 km/h, becoming light in the late afternoon. Maximum 19. Right now it's about 13.

TRAINS There is good service on the South Coast line.

TRAFFIC  Looking good on the roads around the Illawarra this morning. There are ongoing roadworks at Mount Ousley and Gerringong, and parts of Keira Street in Wollongong remain closed to traffic.

7.55am Congratulations Michael Shelley, the first Commonwealth Games marathon winner for Australia in 20 years. 

7.45am "I reckon my little fella, he'd resemble her ... when you look at the facial features of when they were both three years old, it's strange really." The 50-year-old brother of Cheryl Grimmer, who was five years old when she vanished from Fairy Meadow Beach on a hot January day in 1970, says he often wonders how his sister would look today. Cydonee Mardon has the story here

7.40amCheck out the magical work of Corrimal photographer Matt Smith, who uses infrared technology to breath new life into area bush landscapes. 

7.35am The children’s chorus from the Wollongong Con will be performing with Opera Australia in Mozart’s The Magic Flute on August 8 & 9.

7.30am A cocky radio DJ-turned-conman from the South Coast has gone to ground a few days shy of his 21st birthday, after his latest scam left small businesses and young DJs thousands of dollars out of pocket.

7.25am Unbelievable! These shocking Tour de France legs have gone viral.

7.20am Meet aspiring East Corrimal model Danielle Kampers, who's just been signed to an all-Aboriginal modelling agency. 

7.15am The new season of The Block has arrived - did you catch the season opener last night? Some interesting new couples. 

7.10am A leading Russian newspaper has published a front page apology to families of those killed in the Malaysia Airlines crash.

7.05amMH17 Troubled national carrier Malaysia Airlines has begun a strategic review that is likely to result in a change of name and a radical overhaul of its business.

7am Good morning, if you're just joining us. A quick update: 

WEATHER We're headed for a mostly sunny one, with winds northwest to southwesterly, 15 to 25 km/h, becoming light in the late afternoon. Maximum 19. Right now it's about 13 outside.

TRAINS There is good service on the South Coast line.

TRAFFIC  Looking good on the roads around the Illawarra this morning. There are ongoing roadworks at Mount Ousley and Gerringong, and parts of Keira Street in Wollongong remain closed to traffic.

6.55am Looking for a fun night out? The Social is hosting Fiesta Thursdays, serving up a range of sangria specials to go with tasty $5 tapas plates. You can also head there for an after-work drink every Tuesday to Friday - enjoy $5 house beer & wine from 5pm to 7pm.

6.50am NEW CAFE Have you given Honest Don's in Thirroul a go yet? 

6.45am STRANGE BUT TRUE Don’t like the idea of ending up in the ground when you die? Well, why not ask you relatives to turn your cremated remains into art? Yep, this is a thing now - from ashes to art. Click here for more

6.40am Have you popped into the brand, spanking new Mimco, Trenery and Oxford stores in the Crown St Mall? They’re very shiny and fresh and full of lovely tax-cheque-friendly purchases.

6.35am COMMONWEALTH GAMES Three gold medals in three days - that's our Emma McKeon!  

6.30am MH17 "Although Australian, Malaysian and Dutch investigators have been scouring the site for days, they are yet to unearth more solid evidence establishing the cause of the crash, such as the sort of blast holes than an exploding missile might make through a plane."

6.20am ABC Illawarra has some tips for what to do in the garden before Spring.

6.15am "As a side note, that’s the last time I’m taking pictures of dog poo," says a Gwynneville man who is having a (parden me) spray about Wollongong's "brown mile", in today's Merc. 

6.10am "It just didn't happen." The truth behind the #westillcoming viral wedding pic.

6.03am ... and in news further afield

Job-seekers will be compelled to conduct 40 job searches a month and carry out up to 25 hours a week of community work to keep dole payments - The Australian.

* Violence around the crash site of Malaysia Airlines flight 17 forced Australian and Dutch investigators to remain in their hotel, despite Malaysia announcing it had reached a deal for unfettered access.

One million shoppers have been warned they risk being ‘‘stranded at the checkout’’ when signatures for debit and credit cards are replaced by personal identification numbers from Friday - SMH

* Indian consular staff will this morning begin processing 157 Tamil asylum seekers after they were transferred from Coco Islands to mainland Australia last night, several weeks after their boats were intercepted, in June.

6.01am Let's take a look at what's making headlines locally:

* A Berkeley widow who has been verbally abused by irate netball mums looking to park in her street has called on the council to end the traffic chaos.

* Demolition work has begun on the former Oxford Tavern.

* A social media campaign is underway to find missing Kiama teen Scott Carrigan. 

WEATHER We're headed for a mostly sunny one, with winds northwest to southwesterly, 15 to 25 km/h, becoming light in the late afternoon. Maximum 19. Right now it's about 13.

TRAINS There is good service on the South Coast line.

TRAFFIC  Looking good on the roads around the Illawarra this morning. There are ongoing roadworks at Mount Ousley and Gerringong, and parts of Keira Street in Wollongong remain closed to traffic.

6am Good morning, Illawarra. Welcome to the start of another week. 

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