Electricity North West said it is prepared and “on hand” for the first named storm of the year, Storm Erik, which forecasters predict will bring gusts of up to 70mph.

The region’s power network operator has added more engineers on standby with staff across the organisation monitoring the forecast and “poised to respond”.

The Met Office has issued a yellow weather warning for Friday 8 February and Saturday 9 February.

Electricity North West is bracing itself for strong winds tomorrow between midnight and 3pm with gales of between 60mph and 65mph in Cumbria and around 50mph to 60mph for the rest of the region.

Strong winds can cause power cuts by blowing debris into overhead power lines or bringing lines down.

Samantha Loukes, incident manager for Electricity North West, said: “Over the next 48 hours, we’ll be closely monitoring the weather to ensure any damage is repaired and power returns as quickly as possible if it does go off. We are always prepared and well-rehearsed, working around the clock to mobilise our engineers during incidents such as this.

“We would urge people that if they do see any damage to our overhead power lines, to please stay away and report it to us immediately so we can repair it safely.

“As always, we are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week if customers need any help or advice.”

Electricity North West offers extra support to customers through their Priority Services Register. The distribution network operator (DNO) is investing £1.8 billion from 2015-2023 in the overhead lines and underground cables that serve the region.

The DNO is rumoured to be up for sale by its owners US investment bank JP Morgan and Australian institutional investor Colonial First State.

In September last year a contractor with Northern Ireland Water died during Storm Ali, after he was thought to have been hit by a tree in County Armagh.

The incident happened at a water pumping station at Slieve Gullion Forest Park.