Storm Barbara is set to batter Hyndburn today.
Motorists are being warned to take extra care travelling home for Christmas, with gale force winds expected to cause disruption on the roads.
A yellow wind warning - urging people to ‘beware’ - is in place for Friday and Sunday in the north west.
In our region, gusts of around 42mph are expected by around 3pm. Winds are expected to gradually pick up through the morning into the afternoon.
Things should calm down again into the evening as Storm Barbara passes over the UK.
Severe gales and heavy rain are sweeping into Cumbria this morning.
The nasty weather will spread southwards later into the afternoon, affecting Hyndburn.
After the main rain band has moved on, it will stay windy, and there will be more showers.
It will remain windy and wet overnight.
Elsewhere in the north west, towards Liverpool, gusts could reach 60 to 70mph.
Experts have warned the weather has the potential to disrupt power lines and cause damage to buildings.
Saturday morning - Christmas Eve - is expected to remain dry. There will be rain and some gusts late into Christmas Eve.
The yellow weather warning will return on Christmas Day, with strong winds expected and some showers into the evening.
Gusts could reach 50mph on the big day in Hyndburn.
Boxing Day is expected to remain dry, with some decent spells of sunshine and temperatures of around 7C.
The Met Office said: “A deep depression, now named Barbara, will move northeastwards across the Atlantic, passing to the northwest of Scotland during Friday.
“South to southwesterly winds will increase earliest across Northern Ireland and western Scotland early on Friday, before transferring to the rest of Scotland, parts of northern England and northwest Wales through the day.”