That's it from us today Canberra. We hope your week is off to a good start.
Here's a wrap of the five most clicked stories of the morning.
The Canberra Raiders' week from hell hit a new and unexpected low on Sunday with star centre Blake Ferguson tangled in a bizarre off-field drama.
A row over toilets at plush new tax department offices in Melbourne is heading for the industrial tribunal with staff alleging that things are getting dirty in the workplace.
Fire fighters extinguish a housefire at Nicholls, putting out hot spots and assisting a fire investigator.
Graziers Howard and Anne Charles are craving a free trade agreement with China but not even Kevin Rudd's mandarin or farming roots can prompt them to vote for him.
An Australian government report recommends a Sydney-to-Canberra high speed rail link be up and running in 17 years, with a $23 billion price tag and a fare of $42 to $69 to compete with the airlines.
The road is now clear after that accident on Norman Lindsay St in Conder.
Update on collision Conder. Road is all clear and open. Thanks.— ACTPol_Traffic (@ACTPol_Traffic) August 25, 2013
Up at the National Press Club today, Federal MP Bob Katter, founder of Katter’s Australian Party, debates Clive Palmer, founder of the Palmer United Party.
Should be an interesting one - we'll bring you story on the homepage after 12.30pm.
You can keep up to date with federal election news today, via Stephanie Peatling's Federal Election Live blog.
Big news for fans of The Boss.
Tickets for Bruce Springsteen's next tour of Australia go on sale today!
Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band return in February.
February 7 - Perth Arena
February 11 - Entertainment Centre, Adelaide
February 15 - AAMI Park, Melbourne
February 19 - Allphones Arena, Sydney
February 22 - Hope Estate, Hunter Valley
February 26 - Entertainment Centre, Brisbane
Traffic is still affected after an earlier two-car accident in Conder. One of the cars is still on the road on Norman Lindsay Street, near the Woolworths petrol station awaiting a tow, with oil and glass also needing to be cleaned up.
Police are still advising drivers to avoid the area, with Norman Lindsay Street closed heading toward Tharwa Drive.Back to top
You can also keep up to date with market moves today, via the Markets Live blog.
The Australian market looks set to open higher following gains on Wall Street which enjoyed a jolt from Microsoft’s announcement that chief executive Steve Ballmer will retire within the next 12 months.
Meantime, the Australian dollar was a third of a US cent higher after solid gains on Wall Street on Friday.
Earlier this morning, the local unit was trading at 90.39 US cents, up from 90.03 cents on Friday.
It seems Tony Abbott's daughters stole the show at the Liberal Party's campaign launch in Brisbane on Sunday.
“Today we want to tell you about our dad,” Frances began Sunday afternoon as the Coalition formally launched its election campaign in Brisbane.
“Like all dads, our dad has been known to embarrass us.”
You can follow today's election news live via Stephanie Peatling's Federal Election Live blog.
Abbott girls a secret weapon
Tony Abbott's daughters, Frances and Bridget are being used "to great effect" by the opposition leader as they "humanise him" by painting a picture of a daggy dad.
Jon Tuxworth brings us the story this morning that Canberra's Nick Kyrgios' rapid rise is set to continue with a debut selection in Australia's Davis Cup squad.
Australia coach Josh Eagle has confirmed the teenager will be included in a five-man squad to play Poland in Warsaw next month.
Rte 737 (8:19am from City BS) will not operate from Brindabella Business Park at 8:41am due to a breakdown.— ACTION Bus Alerts (@ACTIONbusAlerts) August 25, 2013
Scott posted in at 11-under par early at The Barclays on Liberty National Golf Club in New Jersey with a host of big name challengers hunting him down, but no one could reel him in.Back to top
Dar was seen to push Clarke away from him and fellow umpire Kumar Dharmasena, who were checking the reading on the light meter that would lead them seconds later to abandon the day's play with the Test ending in a draw and England taking the series 3-0.
"I can't remember what I said. I remember Aleem touching me and I asked him politely to not touch me because if I touched him I'd be suspended for three matches," Clarke said. "That's all I can remember, coincidentally."
There's been a two-car collision at the intersection of Norman Lindsay Street and Tharwa Drive in Conder.
Delays are expected - avoid the area if you can.
Collision - Norman Lindsay Street and Tharwa Drive, Conder. 2 vehicle collision. Emergency Services enroute, traffic delays expected.— ACTPol_Traffic (@ACTPol_Traffic) August 25, 2013
Fire fighters are still on the scene of a housefire at Nicholls, putting out hot spots and assisting a fire investigator.
While the cause of the fire is still unknown, Commander Mike Cochrane of the ACT Fire Brigade said the house was completely destroyed.
Neighbour Lilly Bogojevic woke about 5.30am this morning to the sound of people screaming and could see flames billowing from the house behind hers.
She called the fire brigade but was told they were already on their way.
"It was so scary, I thought do I use my hose? But it's nothing (compared to the fire)"
Ms Bogojevic knew the Korean family who lived in the home, but was too shaken to go around and see what was happening.
One man was taken to hospital with smoke inhalation, but four occupants of the house had got out by the time the fire brigade arrived.
"Luckily they're all right ... it could have been much worse," Ms Bogojevic said.
The latest Newspoll shows Labor’s primary vote rose three percentage points to 37 per cent, the highest in three weeks, while the coalition’s was unchanged on 47 per cent.
Based on preference flows at the last election, the coalition still leads Labor 53 per cent to 47 per cent two party-preferred, compared to last week’s 54 to 46 per cent result.
The coalition will be ‘‘running scared’’ until the last minute, Liberal frontbencher Andrew Robb says, despite its lead in the opinion polls.
Blake Ferguson... again.
Instead of watching from the stands, Ferguson spent a night out in Sydney with former Raiders' bad boy Todd Carney.
Interim Canberra coach Andrew Dunemann has made the stunning admission that Ferguson could have played - and injury was not the reason behind his absence.Back to top
In entertainment news, the MTV Video Music Awards are set to kick off in the US later this morning.
If you're unfamiliar with the show, it's the place where Britney Spears staged her comeback and "performed" Gimme More in 2007 and where Kanye West interrupted Taylor Swift during her acceptance speech after winning Best Female Video.
The 23-year-old model/femcee is nominated in the Artist To Watch category. Before you YouTube her work be warned that while her music is awesome, the content is not exactly safe for work.
The MTV Video Music Awards pre-show begins at 10am AEST and the awards ceremony starts at 11am. Giles Hardie and Peter Vincent will be live blogging from 11am and live coverage will also be on MTV.
Elizabeth Lee is keeping it tight after a rather lavish ACT campaign last October with a single slip of paper detailing the liberal's plans for real action.
But Kate Lundy spares no expense on her three double-sided pages of 'community news', which includes no fewer than eight pictures of the Labor senator, often handing out money in some form to the local community.
Have you been receiving much campaign material in the mail, online, by phone, or even in person? What's the most effective campaigning method?
A home in Canberra's north has been seriously damaged by fire this morning, and a person has been transported to hospital suffering smoke inhalation.
Fire fighters were called to the blaze in Nicholls at about 5am this morning.
The fire has caused an estimated $450,000 in damages after the roof of the home on Numbat Place collapsed.
Four people evacuated safely but a fifth was taken to Calvary Hospital for smoke inhalation.
The UN says in a statement Secretary General Ban Ki-moon has instructed the mission currently in Damascus, to focus its attention on ascertaining the facts of the 21 August incident as its highest priority.
Prime Minister Kevin Rudd will be campaigning in Sydney today as the countdown continues to the federal election.
With less than two weeks to go, Mr Rudd is expected to focus on jobs and pursue the coalition on its policy costings, as well as plans for the federal budget if it wins government on September 7.
Meantime, Opposition Leader Tony Abbott will be in Brisbane, following the official launch of the coalition’s election campaign on Sunday.Back to top