Take extra care during weekend storm Essex County Council is encouraging residents to take extra care over the weekend, following bulletins from the Met Office warning that a further period of very strong winds up to 60mph - and up to 15mm of rain - is expected across Essex tonight and into Saturday morning.

• The public should be aware of the potential for trees being uprooted and perhaps damage to buildings due to strong winds

• The very strong winds will be accompanied by large waves in coastal areas and the public should also be aware of these potentially dangerous conditions

• There is a strong likelihood of disruption to travel. Residents can check for the latest traffic updates by listening to local radio, or by visiting www.essex.gov.uk/highways or following Prepared in Essex on Twitter: twitter.com/PreparedinEssex

Due to the bad weather the Part-Night Lighting scheme will be suspended across Essex tonight to support the Emergency Services and Essex Highway’s own maintenance crews as they deal with flooding, fallen trees and debris.

Essex Highways is mobilising increased numbers of maintenance staff over the weekend to respond to storm-related incidents.

County Councillor Rodney L Bass, Cabinet Member for Highways and Transportation, witnessed severe weather issues first hand at Little Horkesley and Hatfield Peverel this afternoon, meeting Tim Day, Technical Director of Industrial Water Jetting Systems (IWJS), and representatives of Essex Highways.

Councillor Bass watched IWJS’s water recycling jetting lorry (worth £350,000) cleanse over 400m of pipework running from the highway to the River Ter in Terling Hall Road, Hatfield Peverel, which suffers from recurrent flooding under the rail bridge.

Councillor Bass said: “Essex County Council is investing sensibly to make sure that flooding and other problems brought about by the ongoing severe weather are dealt with quickly and efficiently.

“At this time we recommend that residents only make journeys that are absolutely necessary having first checked the weather forecast.”