Update on Samantha Murphy's phone found at dam, Alex de Minaur's 20-year first: Australia news live

Singapore Airlines are also facing questions about their explanation over what happened on May's turbulence flight that killed one man.

Yahoo's live news blog for Tuesday, June 4 has now concluded.

We started the day with the news Samantha Murphy's phone, which was found last week as part of a renewed search for the missing mother, is working and could prove to be a vital piece of evidence.

Alex De Minaur is the first Australian through to the quarter-finals of the French Open in 20 years. He beat Daniil Medvedev in four sets.

Former Australian of the Year Grace Tame has revealed she's been forced to undergo surgery after learning she has endometriosis.

  • Astonishing price of pack of TimTams in remote area

    While many Aussie households are struggling to put food on the table in our biggest cities, spare a thought for those in remote areas.

    It's no secret prices are higher in such areas, but a picture of a popular treat really shows what thousands are facing in remote Australia.

    The photo from the ABC of a pack of Tim Tams from the local store in the northern WA community of Kalumburu costs $11.70, way up from what you might pay in Melbourne or Sydney.

    "The cost of food is twice what it is in urban settings, and people know it's impacting health and wellbeing," Monash University's Julie Brimblecombe told the public broadcaster.

    TimTams are more than twice the price in remote areas. Source: ABC/ Erin Parke
    TimTams are more than twice the price in remote areas. Source: ABC/ Erin Parke
  • Bird flu outbreak spreads in Victoria

    Bird flu is spreading in Australia after a third Victorian farm confirmed the deadly strain was detected on its property.

    Some 500,000 birds were culled after avian influenza was detected at two farms operated by Avgo and Surf Coast Eggs Farms, which share management, staff and machinery across sites in Meredith and Terang.

    It is unclear if birds at the third site in Meredith will be culled.

    While the US has put a ban on Victorian poultry imports, authorities stress there is no risk to consumers.

  • Homeless man charged over the murder of young surfer

    A homeless man has been charged over the murder of a young surfer who was stabbed while still wearing his wetsuit.

    Police are still trying to track down the weapon used to kill Kye Schaefer, who was stabbed multiple times in the chest and neck during the attack on May 2.

    He was found injured in a car park at Coffs Harbour, on the NSW north coast, after arriving at the beach for an early morning surf.

    The 21-year-old died after being rushed to Coffs Harbour hospital.

    More than a month later, a 36-year-old man was arrested at a local prison on Tuesday and charged with Mr Schaefer's murder.

    Read more here.

  • Bill Shorten distances himself from $600k hire

    Labor frontbencher Bill Shorten has waved off backlash over a $600,000 two-year contract his department awarded to a professional speechwriter.

    Services Australia confirmed during Senate estimates that Sydney-based writer Julianne Stewart secured a contract worth about $300k per year despite the agency having 200 communications staff on its payroll.

    Mr Shorten told ACA later that the writer had “done a very good job” and said his department was responsible for negotiating the contract, not him.

    “The hiring of a speechwriter was done by Services Australia. I have no idea what the payment was, so if you’re trying to link me to that, you know, good luck,” he said.

    During a morning radio appearance shadow treasurer Angus Taylor said the costs were “extraordinary” and an example of “government waste.”

    He said at the rate Shorten made speeches, it worked out at about $20,000 a speech.

    Read more here.

  • Airline launches female passenger feature

    Budget airline IndiGo, one of India's main airlines, is giving female customers the chance to see where other women are sat on a flight as they choose their seats.

    “IndiGo is proud to announce the introduction of a new feature that aims to make the travel experience more comfortable for our female passengers,” the airline said in a statement, according to CNN.

    The airline did not specifically state the reasons behind the move, but said it aligns with their “#GirlPower ethos.”

    Would you like to see such a feature rolled out in Australia? Have your say below.

  • Grace Tame reveals surgery after diagnosis

    Former Australian of the Year Grace Tame has revealed she's been forced to undergo surgery after learning she has endometriosis.

    Tame said she had dismissed ongoing symptoms as a result of "persistent sexual abuse" when she was 15.

    In May's federal budget, the government announced a $49.1m investment into tackling endometriosis, a chronic condition involving the uterus one in nine Australian women have but who often struggle to receive a diagnosis.

  • Aussie no.1 'can beat anyone' at French Open

    OK, let's not get ahead of ourselves here, but this is exciting praise for Aussie no.1 Alex de Minaur.

    After defeating slam winner Daniil Medvedev in four sets at the French Open, the Russian said de Minaur "can beat anyone" as the tournament progresses to the quarter-final stage.

    It's the first time in 20 years an Australian male has been at that stage of the tournament, where de Minaur faces Germany’s Alexander Zverev.

    World No.1 Novak Djokovic could be de Minaur’s semi-final opponent but revealed he could withdraw from his quarter-final clash against Casper Ruud after aggravating an existing knee injury.

    Read more here.

    Australia's Alex De Minaur celebrates winning his fourth round match of the French Open tennis tournament against Russia's Daniil Medvedev at the Roland Garros stadium in Paris, Monday, June 3, 2024. (AP Photo/Christophe Ena)
    Australia's Alex de Minaur celebrates winning his fourth round match. Source: AP
  • The airport hack you might want to give up

    It's a trick many Aussies use when flying. Tying a ribbon around our suitcase so we can quickly identify it on the baggage carousel is nothing new, but for one baggage handler, it's not a good idea.

    The Dublin Airport worker told RSVP Live said it could actually cause your bag to miss your flight.

    “Ribbons that people tie onto their suitcases to help identify them can cause issues with the bag being scanned in the baggage hall,” he said.

    “If the bag can’t be scanned automatically it can end up in manual processing, which could mean your bag doesn’t make it to the flight”.

    Well that's certainly food for thought.

    Bogota, Colombia, El Dorado International Airport, baggage claim area, carousel conveyor belt. (Photo by: Jeffrey Greenberg/Universal Images Group via Getty Images)
    Ribbons are popular on bags, but for one baggage handler, it's a big no no. Source: Getty
  • McDonald's launches cheap new meal deal

    McDonald's is launching a meal to help amid the gruelling cost-of-living crisis, offering two burgers, fries and a drink for just $6.95.

    The McSmart meal is available from this Wednesday and allows diners to choose between two Cheeseburgers or two Chicken n' Cheese or one of each and will be available until September 3.

    The new meal deal available at Macca's.
    The new meal deal available at Macca's.
  • Juror claims they were handed $180k as bribe

    A juror in the US has claimed a woman dropped off $120,000 (A$180,000) at her home and offered more if she voted to acquit seven people charged with stealing more than $40 million (A$60 million) from a program meant to feed children during the pandemic.

    The juror said she immediately handed the money over to police and has since been dismissed.

    “This is outrageous behaviour. This is stuff that happens in mob movies," Assistant US Attorney Joseph Thompson said in court.

    Read more here.

  • Lawyers question Singapore Airlines turbulence explanation

    Lawyers representing several injured passengers from the deadly Singapore Airlines turbulence flight are questioning the airline's claims about what caused the terrifying moment onboard the plane.

    Peter Carter, Director of Carter Capner Law, said it was a possibility the cause was not just simply turbulence.

    "[Possible causes] include possible failure to take the normal precautions to avoid an obvious and large area of thunderstorms, and the failure to alert passengers to fasten seat belts," the firm said in a media release on Tuesday.

    FILE PHOTO: The interior of Singapore Airlines flight SQ321 is pictured after an emergency landing at Bangkok's Suvarnabhumi International Airport, Thailand, May 21, 2024. REUTERS/Stringer/File Photo
    A photo from inside the plane after it had made an emergency landing in Bangkok. Source: Reuters

    If it was determined there were failures on Singapore Airlines' part, compensation claims from passengers would not be capped at $260,000, Carter said.

    “Our working theory is that the aircraft flew through the top of a thunderstorm or in too close proximity to one as it passed over an area notorious for thunderstorm activity in the Inter Tropical Convergence Zone,” he said.

    “The cockpit voice recorder will answer questions about the attention the air crew was paying to developing thunderstorms including whether they were even checking the weather radar.”

    “Furthermore, despite a suggestion from the airline that a return to seat announcement had been made and the seatbelt sign illuminated prior to the incident, passengers we represent tell us there was no seatbelt warning at all, and that service by the flight attendants was proceeding normally.”

  • Major update on Samantha Murphy's phone

    A mobile phone belonging to missing woman Samantha Murphy is undamaged and in near-perfect working condition, after police made the astonishing discovery in a dam near Ballarat.

    Forensic testing on the phone is ongoing after police located the item during a renewed search in the Ballarat area last week.

    7 News reports the phone is in near-perfect condition and undamaged - which could provide vital clues on the final movements of Ms Murphy.

    Read more here.

    phone murphy
    The phone was discovered last week by detectives. Source: Nine/ Victoria Police

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