The Highways Agency has issued an amber alert warning drivers in the North West that heavy rain and high winds are forecast from 9am through to late afternoon today, Tuesday December 24.
The intense low pressure system moving to the North of Scotland is expected to bring strong winds to the North West of the country throughout today before clearing to the North this afternoon.
Gusts of up to 50 mph are expected across much of the region with isolated gusts of around 60-70 mph expected along the Cumbrian coast and higher Pennine routes.
Showers are expected in the area throughout the day and at altitudes higher than 200m, these showers could fall as snow.
Currently, the Agency, in conjunction with the Met Office, is advising drivers of high-sided or other vehicles vulnerable to high winds, should avoid the following roads if possible during the weather alert:
M53 J1-J2 - Wallasey to Birkenhead, M56 J12 – Runcorn and Sutton Weaver, M58 J1 – Kirkby, M6 J20-J21 Thelwall Viaduct, M6 J26-J27 M58 to Standish, M6 J36-J45 through Cumbria, M60 J10-J12 Barton Bridge through to M62, M60 J16-J17 Pendlebury and Kersley to Prestwich and Whitefield, M62 J18 - J27 Between Manchester and Leeds, M61 J4-J5 Westhoughton, M61 J9 / M65 J1 Interchange, A56 Between M65 and A680 at Edenfield, M65 J3-J4 Withnell and Blackburn Interchange, A66 Between M6 J40 - A1 (Scotch Corner), All of the A69.
Live traffic information updates are available on the Highways Agency website at www.highways.gov.uk/traffic and the latest weather forecasts can be found at www.metoffice.gov.uk.