WEATHER warnings by the Met Office have been extended as 'Storm Brendan' heads for Dorset.

Strong winds are forecast to hit the area between 2pm and 3pm today.

A yellow warning for gusts of up to 70mph has been issued for the whole of Dorset during the early part of this week, with heavy rain also a possibility.

The warning was initially in place for just today but now includes Tuesday from midday onwards.

The weather system has been named 'Storm Brendan'. Residents are being warned to prepare for possible disruption and delays to road, rail, air and ferry transport, as well as the potential for short-term power cuts and loss of other services.

It could also cause problems for high-sided vehicles on exposed routes and bridges, with some short-term loss of power also possible.

The Met Office said some coastal routes, sea fronts and coastal communities could be affected by spray with potential for large waves.

A spokesman for the Met Office said: "Southwesterly winds are expected to strengthen across much of England and Wales during Tuesday afternoon and evening. "Gusts of 40 to 50 mph are expected quite widely inland, with exposed coasts and hills having gusts of around 60 mph, perhaps locally 70 mph.

"Heavy rain may be an additional hazard in places. Winds will ease from the west during Tuesday night."