North East drivers must not ignore warnings about Storm Henry, the AA has said.
High winds present significant hazards for drivers, the organisation added, and a new study has revealed that one in 10 motorists lack confidence when driving in strong winds.
Just over half of drivers would call themselves "very confident" while driving in a gale - but gusts can catch out even the most experienced of drivers.
Max Holdstock, the AA’s Patrol of the Year, said: “Wind in the UK rarely blows steadily – and with Storm Henry, gusts of 90mph can be expected in some places..
“You can easily be blown off course especially on exposed roads; when crossing bridges, passing gaps in hedges or buildings or emerging from a cutting.”
The AA has said that drivers should keep their speed down and keep both hands firmly on the wheel especially if their vehicle is being buffeted by gusts or is in the slipstream of other vehicles.
If there is heavy rain, drivers should also be cautious about flooded roads, and in the event of a break down on a motorway or busy road it’s possible that other vehicles, especially high sided vehicles and trailers, might veer into your car if they are blown off course.
It is best to get your vehicle to a safe location - and behind a crash barrier if possible.
Mr Holdstock added: “It is dangerous to drive in the most severe conditions. But if you must, be prepared.
"Plan your journey and allow extra time, keeping an ear out for local radio traffic reports."
“Bear in mind that it could take some time for you to be rescued especially if the road has been closed by fallen trees, flood water or a collision.”