Morning top 5: Italy quake; Rio e-mail claims; and Chicago takes the crown

The top stories this Wednesday morning...

A powerful earthquake has shaken central Italy - trapping people under the rubble of collapsed buildings.

At least six people are reported to have died after the ground shook across parts of the Umbria and Lazio regions.

The mayor of Amatrice has told the media half his town 'has gone'.


Police in Rio claim Pat Hickey offered Olympic tickets to the head of blacklisted seller THG.

The British firm THG was NOT permitted to sell tickets for Rio - but the OCI President reportedly discussed their sale with its CEO up until two days before this year's Games kicked off.

In one email, dated August 3rd, Mr Hickey allegedly told Mr Evans he did not need any of Ireland's national allocation of tickets for the opening or closing ceremonies, so THG could 'use them all'.

Mr Hickey and THG deny any wrongdoing.


Here at home, the inquiry into the Olympic ticket scandal is expected to include a clause that could upgrade it to a statutory level if required.

Yesterday, opposition parties were requested to send in suggestions for the inquiry's Terms of Reference to the Minister for Sport Shane Ross.

The Social Democrats want the investigation to focus on ticket distributor selection and transparency.


It is claimed the average commuter adds 800 calories a week to their diet.

The UK's Royal Society for Public Health says most people's journey to work has risen to almost an hour in recent years, and may now be shortening people's life expectancy.

More than half of those polled said long commutes added to stress levels.


The Chicago Rose is the 2016 International Rose of Tralee.

Maggie McEldowney was announced as the winner of the contest last night in the Dome in Tralee.

The 27-year-old from Chicago's south side works as the Director of Development at a Catholic High School in the city.