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Improved outlook for the weekend

Further heavy rain and gales on Friday are likely to result in further disruption as the last of the string of violent storms we have seen over recent weeks crosses the UK.

Following a 'multi-pronged attack' of heavy rain, hill snow and severe gales on Friday the weather is expected to gradually improve through Saturday leaving a better day on Sunday.

Friday's rain will be followed by heavy and squally showers across southern Britain overnight into Saturday. These will be driven along by severe gales with gusts of around 60 mph inland and perhaps 80 mph in exposed areas along the coast. These potentially damaging winds could bring further travel disruption from fallen trees.

These severe gales could also bring hazardous conditions along the coast and people should stay away from promenades and sea fronts as they could be swept away by large waves or hit by debris.

Snow is expected to fall over the higher ground in northern areas (generally above 300 metres). Lower levels could also see a risk of some temporary snow accumulations (1-3cm), in particular Northern Ireland and parts of Scotland. Combined with strong winds some difficult travel conditions are possible.

Darron Burness, head of the AA's severe weather team, said: "Many people will be travelling for half-term next week but with conditions as they are, try to travel within daylight hours when it's easier to spot flooding and other hazards on the road.

"It's also pretty tiring driving in poor weather, so break up any journey more than three hours long. Check the Met Office weather alerts before heading out and keep tuned to local radio for all the traffic updates. In case you get stuck, at the very least, take plenty of warm, waterproof clothing, an atlas or sat-nav and a fully-charged mobile."

During this period of unsettled weather, people are advised to stay up to date with the latest Met Office UK forecast and Severe weather warnings and find out what to do in severe weather so they can plan ahead for the weather in store.

Looking further ahead, it is a slightly improved picture - Sunday looks dry with sunshine for most, after a frosty and in places icy start. We can expect more rain on Monday but this is expected to be less intense than recently, with lighter winds.

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