ENGINEERS are on standby as the Met Office warns of potential power cuts this weekend caused by Storm Ciara.

The storm, which is expected to bring strong winds of up to 80mph, was officially named on Wednesday.

The Met Office has issued a yellow weather warning across the UK through Saturday night and Sunday.

The gusts could cause damage to overhead power lines as debris and trees affect the network, prompting Electricity North West to step up its preparations.

The Met Office has described the sunny weather today as "the calm before the storm."

They tweeted this afternoon: "Storm Ciara will hit the UK this weekend, bringing potentially damaging gusts, heavy rain and dangerous waves.

"Travel disruption and power cuts are likely. Keep up to date with our warnings."

Electricity North West, which operates the region's power network, has increased the number of engineers on standby and the organisation is monitoring the forecast.

Incident Manager Sam Loukes said: “We monitor the weather daily and while we always have teams on standby 24/7, we can ramp this up where particularly bad weather is forecast.

“Our plans are well practiced and we will have local teams available to respond quickly on the ground, as well as teams in our control room to monitor and respond to any situation to keep power flowing across the region. Our customer team will also be available and we’ll be sending out regular updates via our social media channels.

“We invest money throughout the year to ensure our network is resilient as possible but when the weather hits, we make sure our response is as quick as possible.

“If anyone does see any damage to overhead lines or electricity equipment, we urge them to stay away and report it to us immediately.”

Live powercut information can be viewed on Electricity North West’s website, or by calling 105, free from any phone.

Customers can stay safe and prepare themselves by following advice available at