Today's Morning Rush is brought to you by Lauren Priestley

Good morning and welcome to today's edition of Morning Rush. Everything you need to know, including the latest, breaking news, sport, entertainment, traffic, travel and weather information. Share your news tips and photos at #MorningRushNZ or morningrush@nzme.co.nz

9.01am:

That's it for this morning! Enjoy your Friday and make sure you remember: what day is Father's Day? Sunday. Thanks for joining me, Morning Rush will be back on Monday from 6am.


8.59am: Beauty pic from Auckland-based 10 Stop Photography to leave you with. Stunner!

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8.56am:

Some cuteness in today's Sideswipe.

Too cute. Check out today's Sideswipe.
Too cute. Check out today's Sideswipe.

8.53am:

New Zealand Cricket has binnedlast year's domestic Twenty20 format - scrapping multiple fixtures at a single ground on one weekend, double headers and some night matches.


8.50am: Before we wrap up for the day, here's the stories we will be following.
The jury in the murder trial for the 17-year-old accused of murdering Luke Tipene is likely to come back today - we'll have the latest from court.
A man is fighting for his life in hospital after an assault in Whitianga - we'll be keeping an eye on his condition and the police response throughout the day.
The Palmerston North community is rallying around a family devastated by a fatal fire yesterday. We'll have updates from the community and the family when they come in.
Keep up to date at nzherald.co.nz throughout the day.

8.46am: A bit of Friday cheer for Auckland drivers! Not too shabby at all.

8.42am:

Police are calling for the public's help after a man was found in a ditch following an

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assault

in

Whitianga

. Police say the public can play a key part as officers piece together what happened. Anyone with information on the attack is asked to contact Whitianga Police on 07 866 4000.

8.39am: Commute easing off in Wellinton. It's taking about 24 mins to get to the CBD from Melling; 23 mins from Tawa and 15 mins from Cobham Drive.

8.36am: A young nurse has been asked by a desperate 19-year-old mother to adopt her newborn after she died of Ebola. Here's the story.

Nurse Donnell Tholley, 25, shows a photo of his adopted son Donnell Junior soon after his adoption. Photo / AP
Nurse Donnell Tholley, 25, shows a photo of his adopted son Donnell Junior soon after his adoption. Photo / AP

8.33am:

An area of

Whitianga

remains cordoned off after an

overnight assault

that left a man lying unconscious in a ditch. He is now fighting for his life in hospital. Waikato Police will conduct an extensive scene examination and warn commuters, particularly secondary school students, to factor the cordon into their morning commute.

8.29am: China has a created a new missile that is reportedly capable of destroying an aircraft carrier - here's the pictures.
8.26am: It's relatively mild across the country today - but that looks set to change with a temperature dip and rain forecast weekend. Whitianga is currently seeing the country's high of 12.4C while Gore is the coldest at 3.5C. The windiest is - surprise, surprise - Wellington with gusts of 33kmh.

8.22am: Neighbours tried to convince a woman to give up her dead husband's body that she lived aside in a Porirua flat for weeks. The unbearable smell finally forced neighbours to call the police on Sunday.
8.18am: Interesting clouds in the capital today!

8.15am:

The Wall Street journal has published

pictures

drawn by

children

among the hundreds of

refugees

crammed into

Budapest

train station.

8.11am:

Bit of traffic backing up in Wellington, but it's not looking too shabby. Here's the latest.

8.08am:

Does your

cat

really love you?

University of Lincoln researchers have concluded cats, unlike dogs, do not need humans to feel protected and prefer to look after themselves.

This cat may be adorable but it won't be throwing any affection your way. Photo / Getty Images
This cat may be adorable but it won't be throwing any affection your way. Photo / Getty Images

8.04am:

Extremely hot and humid conditions in

New York

are taking their toll on

US tennis Open

players. Young American

Jack Sock

has retired from his second round match after collapsing and needing on court treatment.

8.00am: Here's the song that's aimed at pulling our heart strings and putting our hands over our silver fern-emblazoned chests this Rugby World Cup. Sol3 Mio 's rendition of Ed Sheeran's I See fire has been announced as our RWC anthem.

Sol3 Mio have recorded the All Blacks' official world cup anthem. Photo / Jason Oxenham
Sol3 Mio have recorded the All Blacks' official world cup anthem. Photo / Jason Oxenham

7.57am:

Do you use wet wipes? Beware! While they're super handy they're also not actually doing the things they're meant to.

7.54am:

7.51am:

A sharp rise in seals coming ashore is being put down to their gradual recovery from human hunting in the past. Two seals, including one leopard seal, came ashore in Auckland yesterday morning.

The leopard seal was spotted having a lazy day on the sand at Kohimarama. Photo / Dean Purcell
The leopard seal was spotted having a lazy day on the sand at Kohimarama. Photo / Dean Purcell

7.48am:

Another thought-provoking cartoon from Rod Emmerson today:

7.44am:

What are your thoughts about the refugee crisis? Do we have a duty to help?

7.40am:

US President Barack Obama has commented on an inspirational post on the

Humans of New York Facebook

page. The post tells the story of a young boy who gave away his possessions - and The White House commented on the post, signed "bo" which the president uses to mark his posts. Check it out.

"Today's his tenth birthday. He's a very emotional young man. He likes to solve other people's problems. One time...

Posted by Humans of New York on Thursday, September 3, 2015

7.36am:

The crash on

Pakuranga Rd

is now clear - expect some delays as congestion eases.

7.32am: Here's the latest drive times for Wellington:

7.28am:

Milford Rd (SH94) remains

closed

between Hollyford and Chasm due to

snow

this morning, the NZTA says.

7.24am: What are your thoughts about our Rugby World Cup team? Gregor Paul and Wynne Gray present their ten Rugby World Cup gamebreakers from the All Blacks and other teams.

Kieran Read during the test against the Wallabies during the Bledisloe Cup test match. Photo / Greg Bowker
Kieran Read during the test against the Wallabies during the Bledisloe Cup test match. Photo / Greg Bowker

7.20am:

New Zealand might be getting one last taste of winter this morning, before warmer weather moves in next week. Snow, rain and gales are all on the cards.

7.17am:

The

SH2 breakdown

near

Horokiwi

is now clear. Drive safe, Wellington commuters!

7.15am: Three NZ rowing boats have booked berths at the Olympics overnight, and the rowing squad is bracing for more wins. We're currently competing at the World Champs in France.

7.13am: Looks like a stunning morning in Wellington. Check out this beautiful pic from the council:

7.09am:

The

refugee father

of two young boys whose bodies washed up on the beach in

Turkey

watched tearfully as their coffins were moved.

. Warning though, guys.

This article contains images you might find distressing.

The bodies of Aylan, three (left) and his brother Galip, five (right) washed up on the shores of the Mediterranean.
The bodies of Aylan, three (left) and his brother Galip, five (right) washed up on the shores of the Mediterranean.

7.05am:

About

100 people

have turned out for an emotional dawn ceremony at New Brighton beach in Christchurch this morning, to make the fifth anniversary of the 7.1 quake that shook the city in 2010.

7.01am: A breakdown on State Highway 2, south of Horokiwi, is causing congestion for Wellington commuters.

6.58am: A Taupo family fled to their neighbour's place early this morning as fire broke out in their home.
The blaze on State Highway 1 happened around 2.15am - it is understood a section of State Highway 1 was closed for a time but has reopened.

6.54am: The UN is eyeing New Zealand as countries around the world look to respond to Europe's migrant crisis. UN High Commissioner for Refugees spokesman Adrian Edwards told Newstalk ZB the hope is New Zealand and other countries take action because they're dealing with a large scale crisis.

6.51am: There's be a bit more traffic on Pakuranga Rd and Pigeon Mountain Rd this morning after a crash.

6.48am:

Donald Trump has just pledged his allegiance to the Republican Party in the race for president, NPR has reported.

6.44am:

A memorial service is being held at New Brighton Beach today.

Jim Deans walks in front of his Home Bush Station homestead, destroyed during the earthquake, 40 km west of Christchurch on 4 September 2010. Photo / Mark Mitchell
Jim Deans walks in front of his Home Bush Station homestead, destroyed during the earthquake, 40 km west of Christchurch on 4 September 2010. Photo / Mark Mitchell

6.40am:

Good morning Wellington! Living the dream it looks like. But the wet and cold weather might be set to return this weekend - we'll have more this morning.

6.37am:

Palmerston North

residents are rallying to help a devastated family after a house fire killed two yesterday. Palmerston North mayor Grant Smith told TV3 the tight-knit community was doing everything they can.

6.33am: Hundreds of migrants are refusing to get off a train in Hungary and board buses to a nearby refugee camp. Police have been preventing refugees wanting to travel to Germany and Austria, from boarding international trains at Budapest's main station for two days.

Here's a tweet from CNN reporter Arwa Damon:

6.29am:

A man is fighting for his life after being assaulted in Whitianga. Police said the man, who is in his 40s, was found on the side of road in Bryce St and was flown to Auckland Hospital just after 2am.

6.25am: Confirmed: wing debris from MH370. French investigators have formally identified a washed-up piece of airplane debris found in July as part of Malaysia Airlines Flight 370, a Boeing 777 that disappeared more than a year ago with 239 people aboard. Here's the full story.

Investigators have been examining the wing part. Photo / LINFO.RE
Investigators have been examining the wing part. Photo / LINFO.RE

6.21am:

The rules for chopping down

trees

in

Auckland

are being loosened - what are your thoughts? From today the vast majority of trees on private urban properties in the city are no longer protected, due to changes to the RMA.

6.17am: Pressure is mounting for the Government to open New Zealand's gates to more refugees - as the refugee crisis moves across Europe.

Hundreds of migrants wait at Keleti Railway Station in Budapest after Hungarian police stopped them boarding trains to Germany. Photo / AP
Hundreds of migrants wait at Keleti Railway Station in Budapest after Hungarian police stopped them boarding trains to Germany. Photo / AP

6.14am:

Enjoy a largely rain-free day in Auckland today. Should be hitting around 15C as well - live it up!

6.10am:

Wheel clamping

is set to become a thing of the past.

6.06am:

It has been revealed a list of the country's most leaky and mouldy schools are being kept secret by the Government -

Clayton Park Primary School principal Paul Wright has closed classrooms with high spore counts. Photo / Brett Phibbs
Clayton Park Primary School principal Paul Wright has closed classrooms with high spore counts. Photo / Brett Phibbs

6.04am:

A house near

Turangi

went up in flames overnight. No one was injured. We will have more for you this morning.

6.00am: Morning all, TGIF! Lauren here - I'll be bringing you all the latest this morning plus catching you up on what you missed overnight.