DISRUPTION could affect the Christmas holiday rush tomorrow as gales and heavy rain sweep across the south coast.
Gusts averaging 40mph are forecast for the Portsmouth area from around midday tomorrow and will continue until around midnight.
Exposed coastal areas could see gusts of up to 70mph.
Persistent heavy rain will continue into the early hours of Christmas Eve, bringing the potential for localised flooding.
A spokesman for the Environment Agency said: ‘People who are set to be away from home for the festive period are urged to check the flood situation and take precautionary steps to prepare, for example by moving valuable items to safety, before travelling.
‘People are also being urged not to drive through dangerous flood water.’
John McTaggart, from the Highways Agency, said: ‘Be aware of sudden gusts of wind, and give high-sided vehicles, caravans, motorbikes and bicycles plenty of space.’
The weather is expected to settle down for Christmas Day and Boxing Day, with a mixture of sunshine and showers.
It will remain breezy and the top temperature will be 8C.