UK weather: Storm Ciara set to batter the country with 80mph winds this weekend
5 February 2020, 12:08 | Updated: 5 February 2020, 12:22
The third storm of the season has been named by the Met Office as yellow weather warnings for wind are put in place.
Gusts of up to 80mph could be felt in some coastal areas this weekend with the Met Office warning of "very strong winds" throughout the country.
Forecasters have issued a "danger to life" weather warning covering the entirety of England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland from 6pm on Saturday and throughout Sunday.
Many inland areas of the UK could experience gusts of up to 60mph, the Met Office said, while gales of between 70-80mph could hit exposed coasts and hills, especially in the north and west.
Heavy rain is also expected, forecasters said.
Met Office chief meteorologist Neil Armstrong said: "After a dry start to the week for many, with some sunny spells, early frosts and fog patches, the weather will become more unsettled as we head towards the weekend.
"This warning is expected to be updated as we get nearer to the weekend and confidence grows in the exact track and intensity of the weather system that is causing the wind and also bringing the potential for some heavy rain.
"Although still a long way off in forecast terms, there are signals the unsettled weather arriving this weekend could also continue into next week."
#StormCiara has been named and will bring very unsettled weather across the UK through Saturday night and Sunday.— Met Office (@metoffice) February 5, 2020
Continue to check our latest warnings 👉 https://t.co/Bf2zfPgzXr #WeatherAware pic.twitter.com/eY6ufXmgc7
The Met Office are also warning of delays to road, rail, air and ferry transport, spray and large waves in coastal areas and power cuts.
People have also been warned about the potential for falling trees, flying debris and have been told to secure garden furniture.
Met Office Chief Meteorologist, Steve Ramsdale, said: “It’s a windy day for the northern half of the UK on Monday and we’ve issued a yellow wind warning for western Scotland on Monday evening, where gusts could reach 80mph at times.
“Tuesday will then start off windy for most with coastal gales in places, before winds ease from the north later in the day."
Deputy Chief Meteorologist Dan Harris said: “Although still a long way off in forecast terms, there are relatively strong signals for very unsettled weather arriving this weekend, and probably continuing well into next week.
"Along with a spell of heavy rain, widespread gales are likely, and severe gales are possible in more exposed parts of the west and north of the UK.
"There is potential for National Severe Weather Warnings to be issued, so we are advising people to keep a close eye on the latest forecast.”
The UK is expected to see a cold night tonight with showers in Scotland. Tomorrow will see a cold start and light winds, forecasters said.
On Thursday and Friday, forecasters are predicting moderate southerly winds.
Friday will be dry and mostly sunny in the east but cloudier to the west, with a few spots of rain possible in the afternoon.