How are you preparing for the arrival of Hurricane Wilma?
This is the second page of your comments.
The following comments reflect the balance of opinion we have received so far:
We are watching the approach of Hurricane Wilma with baited breadth! We are in the Blue Bay Club Hotel, location the beach, the weather has been great today but a change is on its way, the sea is no longer calm and serene! Our holiday company (First Choice) has told us nothing the only news we get is from watching CNN, and we have just been advised that the Airport is closed at Cancun, we have no idea what is going on and we are scared!
The Mexican authorities have told tourists to evacuate high-risk areas along the coast near the holiday resort of Cancun. We have been told to evacuate Cancun. The Mexican government are telling us to wait. The airport is closed and there are no rental cars available but yet our hotel told us if we want to go then we have to make our own way. We have no information at all apart from what we've seen on the internet or CNN.
Well looks like the rain and wind have finally stopped, lots of short sharp rain bursts, as predicted we are a little flooded but after Ivan last year, this was ok. We still have power, water and phones. A lucky escape.
Debbie, Cayman Islands
We are in Orlando and were due to travel to Key Largo on Thursday and have been forced to make alternative arrangements until we fly home next Tuesday. The Florida Keys are being evacuated so we have no choice.
Andy McClintock, Uxbridge, UK
"All quiet on the western front" or should I say "the calm before the storm". Having survived Hurricane Andrew by the grace of god, I am committed and prepared for the inevitable. Twenty gauge steel shutters are secured and generators are in place. I have come to the understanding that storm is not the terrifying component, it is the anxiety of waiting for it and the devastation that has to be dealt with in the aftermath. I must say this though, the power of these hurricanes are in no comparison to the "Banding of Brothers" for the common good of helping your fellow man.
Patrick Sheehy, Homestead , Florida
My daughter is on vacation stuck in Cancun, their are no flights out, half of all hotel employees have gone to the town of Cancun to prepare a church and school for hotel guest evacuation, they should know by tomorrow noon if they are evacuating all of the hotels in Cancun. She says they are treating all of the guest like kings and queens.
Miner, Peoria, AZ, USA
On Monday in Cancun few of the locals had any knowledge of the hurricane. On the off chance, we've headed in land to the gulf coast of the Yucatan but hoping there is something left when we return to the Caribbean.
Nat and Rich, London, UK (on holiday in Mexico)
My children John and Katy live on the gulf coast of central Florida with their Mum. They have been lucky so far, let's hope their luck holds. This is the price you pay to live in paradise but the tariff has been getting higher in recent years. Good luck to all Floridians.
Paul Cound, Bromsgrove, England
You can tell our relatives the Bosleys in Tattenhall (near Chester) and Ms Teasdale in Penrith that we are making plans to flee to Georgia, we put plywood on front windows and closed our aluminium hurricane shutters on the rear of our unit, we are 11 ft above sea level and fear a surge that will flood our home. As we are on a creek that leads into the Gulf of Mexico. We are taking dog and cat with food and 10 gallons (37 litres) of water with us. Georgia is about 300 miles due north. Out of about 160 housing units on our street only 3-5 will be staying behind. Canned meat and food that can be eaten without cooking disappeared from the shelves along with bottled water. Petrol stations are doing a brisk business as everyone is topping off their tanks in preparation to leave. Everyone is calm but preparing. All air flights out are filled.
Jim Janek, Bonita Springs, Florida
My Brother and Sister in Law are honeymooning on a luxury cruise in the Bahamas. They are supposed to be landing in Miami on Saturday which is in direct conflict with the Hurricane. I have only just heard about Wilma and will be looking to find out a lot more info! All the best to those in what will be the affected areas.
Matt, Blackpool, England
I am worried about my daughter and her family in Ft Pierce who can't afford to leave and we only have social security and cannot help them.
Carole Lawson, Fort Worth, USA
My daughter is in Playa Del Carmen for the MTV awards that were cancelled. Early Weds the skies were still sunny. People seemed unaffected this morning. Some may not have known the seriousness of the situation until cancellation of the awards.
G Middleton, Maple Ridge, BC
I used to live not far from London, in Reading, and while there did on occasion complain about the consistently bad weather. Now, I live in Florida, where the weather's great 360 days a year. Those other five days, however, give the words "bad weather" an entirely new definition.
Heath Hooper, St Petersburg, FL
Land slides and damaged houses, electricity is out and road blocked by water and landslides.
Jason Reid, Top Hill District, St Catherine, Jamaica
My mom and dad are/were celebrating their 50th wedding anniversary with a trip to Cancun where they always wished to go. I heard from my father earlier today and found out that yes, they are in a "safe" shelter but the shelter is separating the men from women. So, tonight my love and prayers go out to my parents who are spending their 50th in an area they always wanted to be, but ironically apart from each other. Love you Mom and Dad! We'll have a party when you return, be well, come home safely and God bless you!
Margaret, Saratoga Springs, NY, US
My daughter and son in law were evacuated to a theatre from Occidental Caribbean Hotel. I spoke to her about 5pm (GMT)and she said they were safe but conditions were not good. I am hoping to hear from her again soon.
Sylvia, Newcastle, UK
My daughter and her boyfriend are in Cancun, I am very disappointed that the tour operator only evacuated them on Thursday after knowing that this hurricane was going to hit Cancun for the life of me I cannot understand why they waited so long, they were moved to a sports hall which was situated about 10 minutes away from there hotel, I received a text message from her telling me that they had to be moved again because the wind took the roof of the sports hall, they have now been moved into a school a little further inland, so much for being well equipped to deal with hurricanes, they have known this hurricane was going to hit Cancun for nearly a week, I am absolutely livid that the tour company waited so long to act.
Steve Whittaker, England
It's now over four hours ago since we last heard from my pregnant sister in law, alone with her two sons. Her husband has had to stay in his Hotel 40 minutes away (he's a Director of the hotel). The last thing we had heard the hotel had had its roof ripped off. My sister in laws house was starting to flood. The phones are now dead and we can't contact anyone.
Patrick Bastow, Littlehampton, West Sussex
My son lives in Panama City Florida and every time I hear of another Hurricane heading for his area I panic. He does not have the money to just up and leave his area. For people in his position we hope that God takes care of them.
Heather Moses, Adelaide, Australia
I hope and pray it misses us, my roof won't take another storm, my house won't take another storm and personally I'm not sure I can take another storm.
Steve, Sarasota, Florida
There are approximately 500 of us here in a Medical University in Merida from all nations. We have been moved here from the El Dorado Royale, Riviera Maya for safe shelter from Hurricane Wilma. We are 200 miles inland from Cancun and the eye of the storm. The weather outside is getting pretty bad with heavy wind and rain. We have been told that we will need to stay at the shelter until at least Sunday. Hopefully we will then return to the hotel for late Sunday, early Monday morning if it's still standing. The hotel staff are tour operator reps are looking after us all very well and keeping us informed of any developments.
Emma Francis, Burnley, Lancashire, England
Am very frightened, my sister and very new brother in law (from 15th October) Kate and Sandy Smart are in Cancun, can't get hold of them, want to know they are safe. Why weren't they sent home? It's not as if Wilma was a surprise. Keeping everything crossed that they are both ok.
Jacki Stephen, Dundee, Scotland
My sister from Oklahoma and I were all prepared to enjoy a wonderful trip to Ft Lauderdale, then a cruise through the Caribbean, then on to Orlando. When I called the resort to cancel because of the hurricane I was told that the cruise was still happening and I would have to pay $200.00 (to an already expensive trip) to reschedule. The people who run this resort are living in denial and are willing to put all their visitors in jeopardy rather than lose one dollars. Shame on them.
Debra Browne, Des Moines, WA
My dad and step mum are over Mexico on a wedding/holiday as well and they were meant to come back Sunday, but it doesn't look like they are, I just want my dad to know that I love him.
Natasha, Bristol, UK
My 81-year-old parents and in-laws were moved from their hotel in order to go to a shelter where "there will be provisions." The shelter was full. They were sent to another school with no provisions. We have not heard from them since a cell call Thursday night.
Karen Walker Freeburg, Shorewood, Illinois, USA
My son and girlfriend are both in Cancun I know both where in a safe house/hotel 10 to a room without electricity I find it hard not knowing what is happening. I am fed up hearing about is happening about "people going on about going on holiday during the school half term next week what about the adults and children from Scotland already there let a lone the poor people who live with this threat with no where to go.
D Aitkenhead, Carluke Scotland
I live on the island of Roatan off the north cost of Honduras, which is famous for its diving. I have been here for 10-years now and only Hurricane Mitch was worse than Wilma. The NOAA weather forecaster said we would get 8-12ft seas and 20-30 knot winds but yesterday gusts of 80 mph were coming in and the seas were up to 20ft. We were 160 miles from the eye at the nearest point. Docks were destroyed, buildings damaged, roads impassable, boats sunk, trees down. My husband and I own a dive shop and hotel in the village of West End, on the north coast. We didn't pull up our boats because the forecast wasn't too bad and they survived, amazingly. If we had pulled them up in amongst the palm trees, on our beach, they would probably been smashed to bits! Today we are clearing up but the sea is still at least 10 feet and people are walking around looking a bit dazed. I can't even imagine what destruction the centre of Wilma will do if the outer part did this to us. Good luck Mexico, Cuba and Florida. You are going to need it.
Mish Akel, West End, Roatan, Honduras
Gas lines are long and many of the stations have only premium gas available. We are at the end of the season, so most people are in a wait and see mode, until Wilma actually takes the turn east toward Florida. No shutters are up yet, but we are prepared to move quickly once we know a hurricane is actually coming. This is not something to take lightly, so we have stocked up on batteries, water, propane, snacks and lots of beer. The waiting is the worst. Wish us luck!
Ashley Johnson, Pembroke Pines, Florida
My mum and step-dad are on honeymoon in Mexico, in the Riu Yucatan Hotel in Riviera Maya, we have not heard from them for a few days, we know they are in a shelter somewhere, but we don't know where. The holiday company doesn't even know. You don't think things like this will affect you but it hits hard when it does. I just hope they are OK, this was meant to be a special time for them. I hope they remain in good spirits and keep safe.
Emma Done, Chester, England
My daughter and her boyfriend are on holiday at Cancun, they were staying at the Hotel Riu Cancun and were due to fly back on Thursday but sadly their flight could not take off. They have been evacuated to a school in downtown Cancun and say they may be there until Sunday. They have plenty of food and water and up until 3pm GMT when I last heard from her she said although they had very little sleep everyone was in good spirits. I just hope it continues that way and everyone comes out of this safely
Maureen, Newcastle, England
I wish to locate my daughter and her husband; Richard and Phillippa Shere who are on holiday in Mexico. They are sending us text messages but are not receiving ours. They travelled 8 hours out of Cancun and may be in Playa del Carmen. I would be grateful if they could contact me via this web site. Alternatively is there an address or helpline that families in the same situation as myself can contact?
Hazel Snowball, England
My son lives in Cancun and has recently purchased his own house 3 miles from the coast. An 8 mile radius has been told to evacuate, and he was moving off to higher ground yesterday afternoon. As you can imagine this affects me greatly as I am worried for him and his little family. We have been to Cancun on several occasions and loved it. Would hate to see it decimated like New Orleans.
LInda Peat, Duxford UK
My brother and his wife are in Cancun this week. Thursday they sent an email saying their hotel is rated for a category 5 hurricane and they will stick it out. I hope it truly is and that they have lots of film.
Kathleen Runey, Laurel, Md, USA
Naples has escaped every major storm to hit FL over the last 40 years and our luck has just run out. I work at Naples airport and the quantity of private planes coming in to evacuate residents is alarming. We have decided to ride it out with our animals, unless it strengthens to a cat 5 again. Wish us luck!
Katharine Musgrove, Naples, Florida
My daughter, her husband and two children are holidaying in Ford Lauderdale. Please can anyone let me know what's happening there.
Janice Hopkins, Stourport, Worcestershire
My mum, step dad and my brother and sisters are in Cuba right now. I hope they are ok, I have no way of getting in touch.
My daughter, her boyfriend, my son and his friend have been evacuated from the main coastal strip and been moved only two miles up the coast, the water is running down the walls, the corridors are flooded, the main window in the hotel has just blown in, the wind blew a loft hatch down which landed on my daughters head and cut her quite badly, they are know sheltering in the corridor huddled together and feeling quite scared, all I can do is worry.
My parents are currently in Cancun and have been told the eye will hit at about 7 tonight and they can't be evacuated, they are currently in a shelter lost contact with them today.
Paul Underhill, Peterborough, England
We have been evacuated from Cancun and are sheltering with about another 150 UK residents in a medical university in Merida waiting for it to happen tonight. There are various UK Government reps looking after us along with our hotel staff who are doing an excellent job in difficult circumstances. However, we hope to return, if the hotel (Eldoro Royale) is still there, on Sunday. Until then, we will remain here where it is safe and where there is plenty of food and water.
James Millett, Merida, Mexico
My sister Barbara Anne Mc Whinnie and Claire, my niece, are in shelters somewhere near Cancun. They should have been home at 7am this morning. Claire works in the local Travel agency in Bolton
Angela Brown, Glasgow
The waves are still crashing in Central George Town the Capital of Grand Cayman. Homes have been flooded on the coast in the outer districts. Many roads are still closed. And as Wilma moves further away the waves action is still very intense.
N/A, Cayman Islands
I gave my daughter away at her wedding just under 2 weeks ago. Sent her and my new son-in-law on an all expenses paid honeymoon to the Yucatan Peninsula, staying in the Rio Peninsula. As I type this note my daughter, Danielle, Son-in-law Tom, are trapped in a hotel room (all last night so far) with Hurricane Wilma obliterating everything around them. The eye of the storm has started to hit and they are worried that all the glass doors are about to blow in. They have lost power, etc and have had to put their mattresses against the windows and hold up in the bathroom/toilet. I am really worried as the back of the eye of the storm will bring a 3M tidal surge and they are trapped right on the beach, plus 20inches of rain will fall within the next few hours, gulp!!!
Wayne Starr, Tamwirth, UK
My daughter and her new husband, since October 8, 2005, were given a pre paid package gift for a trip to Cancun for their honeymoon. When the couple saw the hurricane moving in that direction, they called the travel agent to try to get re-scheduled due to Hurricane Wilma. They were told that if they didn't take the trip on Oct. 19-22 the trip would be forfeited with no refunds. Rather than loose the gift pre-paid package, they left on October 19 for Cancun. On October 20 they were evacuated from the hotel to a shelter. That's where they have been since they arrived. I have a question to travel agencies. I understand about cancellations and how annoying they can get. My concern is that when a deadly Hurricane is approaching an area and customers are willing to change plans why are they forced to put their lives in danger rather than just re-schedule?
Micky Clark, Percy, IL
My pregnant sister-in-law lives around 40 miles along the coast from Cancun. She is on her own with her two children. As her husband runs a hotel and has had to stay there. We have just got in touch and she says that the hurricane has just hit and is expected to stay for many hours. Water is coming into her house already and she is very, very frightened. We pray that the whole family is safe. She has not heard from her husband yet.
Patrick Bastow, Littlehampton, UK
My wife's sister and boyfriend are in Tulum, Mexico, currently holed-up in the (concrete) house of the owners of the hotel they were originally staying in. We've received the odd text message from them describing the horrific sound outside and how they hope all will be well so long as the roof stays on, but having boarded up the windows they've no visual indication of the damage being caused. They've already given up hope on their hire Jeep parked outside. None of them dare look outside for fear of weakening their defences. Needless to say, we're feverishly scouring the web for the latest news on the region and to be honest, what makes matters worse is the US media coverage, which on the whole is shameful - they only seem worried about the potential US damage, with no thought for those in Mexico, Cuba, Jamaica etc. On behalf of all those who've loved ones at risk in non-US areas, I ask the BBC to counter this US-centric coverage, to give as many updates on the storm and its trail, as possible.
Stephen, Oxford, UK
We were into the 4th day of our 14 day vacation on Wednesday evening when the tour operator told us that we had to be out by 5am the next morning. A plane was brought in and 300 of us were taken out. There was no question of choice we had to go. We hope to go back when things are normal again.
Jim Arrindell, Brantford, Canada
My son and his bride, Veronique, are in Cancun on their honeymoon. They have telephoned twice now to confirm that they have been taken to the West coast of Mexico and are staying a school until Wilma blows over. They are in 90mph winds whilst the storm at Cancun is 145mph. They say their hotel has been destroyed - some honeymoon! At least they seem OK.
Iain Millett, UK
My parents are currently cruising around all of the above countries, I have not heard anything from them I am just presuming they have not been caught up in it. Has anybody heard anything from the Royal Caribbean Ship Explorer of the seas?
Alison Rigby, Chester, England
From BBCMundo.com: I own a small hotel here. We tried to convince the tourists of the threat posed by this hurricane and we suggested they go to the shelters. But some of them do not understand. They only ask when they can come back to the beach.
Monica Quiroz, Playa del Carmen, Mexico
From BBCMundo.com: We are being affected now by the rain. I am calm because we have one of the best systems of disaster prevention in the world. All our resources are ready for this event.
Manuel Aranda Garcia, Havana, Cuba
We are way off the path of "Wilma" but are still seeing the affects! We had a night of thunder, lightening and heavy rain from midnight to 6am this morning. Roads are passable but still flooded. I have heard from the locals that Provo has seen more rain than we have in Grand Turk. We have my parents here for a three-week vacation and they were a little worried at the conditions last night, but we are all well.
Richard Illingworth, Grand Turk, Turks & Caicos Islands
Rain, rain and more rain. Roads are blocked, schools are closed, houses are flooded, entire communities have been turned to riverbeds... some parts of the country is like New Orleans. Hope this passes soon.
Ketoya Denton, Kingston, Jamaica
My parents, brother and cousin are in Florida and don't come home till after the weekend, I cant get in touch with them I will have to wait till they phone me, so it doesn't help to hear people say they hope the worst is over and done with by the time they go because the worst could just affect the people I love!
Steph, St. Helens, England
I got back to the UK last December after living in the Florida Keys for 18 months. As you all know, Florida had four hurricanes last year and we evacuated for Ivan I think it was, it looked like it was on a straight path for us then but veered away. Hoping that it'll do the same this time. I've been speaking to a pretty salty friend back in Big Pine, he's stayed through them all for years, but he's thinking to leave for this one......good luck guys.
Jonathan Smith, Lerwick, Shetland Islands
My mother and father are vacationing in Cancun, MX with some friends. I have no way of contacting them. Their names are Marla and Greg Chandler of Saline, MI USA. They intended on flying home this Saturday but Wilma is going to hit before that.
Andrew Chandler, Ann Arbor, MI USA
My son is on a cruise of the islands, leaving Galvaston on Monday, Where are they now, please?
I moved to Florida at the beginning of the hurricane season and have watched three or four hurricanes brush past my home. I just hope that Wilma is another near-miss instead of a direct hit.
Mike Lynch, Port Saint Lucie, Florida, USA
We are preparing to evacuate the area. Category four and five hurricanes are not survivable if you have a direct hit. Less risk to leave. We have companion pet birds and are moving the flock as soon as we get a better picture where will be safe. That's the problem, sometimes it's better just to stay put and suffer through the lack of power than leave and run smack into the storm when you are not at home at all.
Jon-Mark, Fort Lauderdale, FL USA
I have recently moved back from the Cayman Islands but my son is still out there with his father. I fear for their lives but can't get out there to be with them. When will it ever end?
Naomi Moss, Dorset, UK
Wilma is not currently due to hit here, but a lot of people have felt an economic impact. Cruise ships have been cancelled this week, taking a lot of much needed income (gas is now $10 a gallon) out of their pockets. So remember, there is more than floods and rain effects when a storm blows through.
Keren M, Belize City, Belize
I think most people in Florida learned from the 2004 Hurricane season not to take any of these storms lightly. Many local residents have already begun to prepare, but we all still pray that it's intensity lessens or that Wilma bypasses us all together.
Ana, Pompano Beach, FL
So far, Wilma is only a few clouds. We plan to make a decision on Thursday - ride it out or leave. If it's a 3 or above and headed our way, we will leave. If not, we ride it out. Wish us luck!
Doug Gondela, Osprey, Florida, USA
My in-laws lost their home in Punta Gorda last year from Hurricane Charlie. They are just finishing construction on their new home now but are currently out of harms way in Pennsylvania. My parents live in Naples which is on the predicted storm track and have typically been stubborn about evacuating. Time to get on the phone and see if we can't talk some sense to them. Maybe we'll get lucky and the storm will veer off out to sea.
Chuck, New York
I am staying over in Tampa Florida studying. So far we have heard very little and what is going on with the hurricane. It's only under my own research I know just how big this is. Looks like its batten down the hatches and hold onto your hats time.
Rhys Hodge, Tampa, Florida But a Student from the UK
Another massive hurricane! I've taken no time in boarding up the house and making sure my family is safe!
Matt Farr, Ft Lauderdale
My sister lives on the Honduran Island of Roatan. My mom flew from Cayman Islands to Roatan to escape Wilma on Monday. La Cieba airport was only opened for a few hours on Monday. It was a very scary flight to Roatan. She phoned me yesterday, Tuesday, by cell phone. Electricity is out. Landline phones are out. Winds were very strong. They will contact me when they can.
Justin Bennewith, San Diego, California
The last time we had this type of advisory from a hurricane was when Iris was about to hit. The islands were the last to know and by the time the warnings went out it was too late to move from the island we were stuck and only God saved us. Again they are planning for Mother Nature.
Marisa Alamilla, San Pedro, Belize
Unfortunately, I am in the directed path of this hurricane and I am terrified. Every one here in Southwest Florida is on edge. After we went through hurricane Charley last year and seeing the images of Hurricane Katrina, we are taking all precautions to be ready for this storm. I think if we all stick together and help each other like we all have through the many catastrophes plaguing this world, we will get through this.
Christina McNabb, Fort Myers, Florida
Currently we've just been told the region is on Orange Alert and likely to go to red alert this time tomorrow. We expect the storm to go 8'm to the west of us, but may still be hurricane strength here. As a precaution we're stocking up on three days food and water, because they will cut the electricity (to avoid fires) and maybe the telephone system tomorrow. No one is worried, but everyone is a little jumpier than usual!
Raj , Currently Playa del Carmen, Mexico
I am at a tradeshow in Miami Beach and am making arrangements to get my staff out of town before Friday. There are thousands of attendees, so we are very concerned about getting everyone off the beach and safely inland prior to Saturday. It's my first potential emergency, I am glad it's Florida and not Louisiana. The city has been very good with the updates and helping me come up with an evacuation plan.
Greg Burton, Atlanta, GA USA
Buying enough food and water to sustain for 3 days of not being able to cook. I'm 10 miles south of where Charley hit in the summer of 2004 so we know how to prepare, we know the landfall can change dramatically the last few hours before it hits.
Joel Kamenoff, Fort Myers, Florida USA
As usual the Cayman Islands are being ignored. Despite the devastation of Grand Cayman by Hurricane Ivan in Sept. 2004 and near misses from Dennis and Emily this year, we don't get a mention on-air. Do we have to have massive casualties to be news-worthy?
Chris Randall, Cayman Islands
I'm scared. We've been fortunate to have missed out on any severe damage from all of these current hurricanes to hit Florida. This time I'm really scared. I have 3 dogs and cats and don't believe I could evacuate and take them all. I love them very much, so I'll stay with them. I've been on my knees, reminding God how I've been trying my best to be obedient. I asked Him for a miracle, that this storm will go away or disappear. Remembering the power of prayer.
Barbara, Valrico, Florida
It's 6.30 am on Wednesday morning and already I can hear the palm trees rustling which is a sure sign that something is coming. Last night we were enveloped in what felt like a bowl of yellow soupy rain and the lightening is flickering already today. Today we'll fill the water containers, check the torches, count the tinned goods and prepare to 'hunker down'. It's an art form here and we are all getting horribly used to it.
Kate Fagalde, Miami Florida
I cannot believe we have another storm heading our way! Years ago we all heard about the El Nino and global warming, nobody really took it all seriously....That was then this is now. Something is happening to this world we call Earth with all these different weather patterns. We are all getting ready for another weekend of watching and waiting again!! Good luck to the rest of Florida.
Barrie Plumb, Florida USA
I live in Broward county and we are all watching very carefully what is going on with Wilma. I feel everyone will be prepared for this and with God's help we will be ok. I am in touch with my family in England as they have been watching the news over there, but I reassure them we will be ok. The Keys are preparing for an evacuation and we are all getting our supplies in over the next few days. Let's hope this in the last one even though they say the warm waters are ripe for another one before the season is over in 6 weeks.
Diana S Fetterman, Coconut Creek, Florida, USA
Having waited 2 years for our holiday to Orlando, Florida, this happens. As we don't fly out until Monday, we're all hoping the worst would have been and gone.
Lynn, Southampton, UK
As I write it is 5.50am here and as day break arrives George Town is breezy but dry with only an inch or so rainfall overnight. The significant change in Wilma's strength overnight has not, as yet manifest itself here and its to be hoped that we survive relatively unscathed. Schools and businesses are shut today and the forecast of up to 15 inches of rain remains to be seen. At present Wilma lies 170 miles from Grand Cayman which brings us within the outer bands of the hurricane only.
Bryan Gray, George Town, Grand Cayman
I have grown up in Florida and never experienced more than 3 hurricanes until these last four years when I've been through at least 5 in that time alone. The climate is definitely changing whether it's due to global warming or a natural cycle of warming water temperature at sea. I plan to evacuate to a more northern and inland Florida location on Thursday or Friday. Thank you for including us in your continuing coverage.
Connie Myerson, Miami, FL, USA
As a regular storm chaser who's been on every one of these things for the last number of years, I'm again looking at a storm chase that takes me to my mother's home in Florida. Hurricane Ivan was a close one there for a few days. She's on a flood area, so it was a stressful time. Instead, I wound up going to Pensacola. After working Katrina for one company and her aftermath in New Orleans, I recommend with complete sincerity that it pays to be watching the track anytime one of these storms comes into your area of the earth.
Jim Bartlett, Florida
If gas prices were not bad enough, this storm is going to hit the already damaged oil rigs in the gulf region. There is only one thing I can say about this, "good gosh, here we go again".
Adam Smith, Boyertown, USA
We're blessed to not be trapped on an island like those living in Cuba and Jamaica but when these storms hit and it takes several months to get your lives back together people forget that the bills still come every month while you are without water and electricity and the creditors think you just can reach down and pull cash from your ass like magic. If only they knew.
Mitch Kloorfain, Port St Lucie, Florida USA
We have had continuous rain for the past couple of days and one or two squalls this afternoon which probably reached 20-25 knots. They are predicting Tropical Storm force winds of 40-50 knots through tomorrow, with 9-12 foot seas. All businesses, shops, schools, and government offices are closed tomorrow. Whilst after 30 years in the tropics you learn not to turn your back on any storm - having lived through "Ivan" a year ago with sustained winds of 150+ mph and gusts to 200+mph, plus ten feet of seawater that washed through my house, the adrenalin has not yet kicked in.
David Wheaton, George Town, Grand Cayman
We are battening down the hatches here in preparation for Wilma. Have been aboard for 5 of the past 7 hurricanes here. Going ashore for this one...all of the sailors here in Key West Harbour have a bad feeling about this...God save us all...S/V GRETCHEN
Dr. Michael F. Pawluk, Sailing Vessel Gretchen, Key West, Florida, USA
There has been continuous rainfall in the country, a lot of houses have been damaged so badly, people have been evacuated in some parts of the country, roads are blocked such that a lot of people have stayed in. Schools are closed.
Roxanne Stephenson, Jamaica
Good to see that you have included the Cayman Islands in your news coverage, we got very little coverage when Hurricane Ivan hit us last September, and wiped out 70% of the homes here.
Sarah Fletcher, Grand Cayman
Living in an area that was affected by three hurricanes last year I am keeping a close eye on the track of this latest hurricane. These storms are often unpredictable in the final path that they take when they are close to making landfall and it is only wise to be prepared throughout all of Florida. Even if it does make landfall to the south of where I live in central Florida we will still have heavy rains and high winds that will cause some damage to the already weakened structures of some homes and businesses that are still recovering from last year's hurricanes.
Dorothy Busby, Kissimmee, Florida USA
As a second home owner in Sarasota but currently in Bath UK preparing to travel out to our winter home in the next few weeks we have friends out there who keep us posted by email and we watch the web to see the likelihood of whether our Florida town will get flattened or not, at the moment the prediction is only 4 or 5% likelihood but some day soon Sarasota will cop the BIG one.
Brian Fearn, Bath England and Sarasota Florida
All eyes have been on Wilma for the last few days. Originally we were on its predicted path but luckily for us that seems to have changed. Currently weather is beautiful with offshore (westerly) winds and sunny skies. Expecting the waves and wind to pick up in the next couple of days as Wilma passes in front of us. May get some of the rain depending on how close she gets.
Chris Beaumont, San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize
My family and friends are in Fort Myers, Florida. If Wilma hits, I hope they will be able to evacuate. The only way out is by plane - cars trips would be useless if done a few days from now. Florida seems to be the heart of hurricanes.
Liz Magnante, Seoul, South Korea
Most of the people here in Sarasota are taking things rather lightly. We seem to have been lucky enough in the past, that the general feeling is that we will be lucky again. However, the hurricane is currently being tracked on a direct path over us. With all the devastation that has occurred in the United States the past few months, this is one citizen who is getting a little anxious.
Nick Wyse, Sarasota, FL USA
So far, as predicted, we are not getting hit too badly by Wilma. There is a lot of rain and some of the strongest winds we have seen this season, but we really cannot complain. Our dog isn't too keen on this weather!
Tim & Claire, Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands
I live right on the predicted path, fabulous Bonita Springs on the coast of Southwest Florida. Hurricanes are one of the perils of trading rainy and cold Britain for a slice of pure tropical paradise.
Carol Bloodworth, Bonita Springs, Florida, USA
My sister has lived in Marathon, Florida for several decades and has had to flee three times already this year! She's devastated at the thought of Wilma, and pretty well ready to move to the mainland for good.
Katie Arthur, Penticton, BC, Canada
I have an Uncle and Aunt in Slidell, Louisiana who were affected by both Hurricanes Katrina & Rita. Our family in Toronto still have not heard word of them. Their Daughter lives in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida and has experienced many hurricanes. One 'tip' which she swears by, to prevent broken car windshields is to cover them with Drywall board. It absorbs the shock and impact of any flying objects. If anyone can find out the whereabouts of Mr. William Macfarlane and Wendy Macfarlane, it would be appreciated.
Ian Macfarlane, Toronto, Canada
According to your projected path for Hurricane Wilma, it should pass about 50 miles south of where I live: a "block house" (concrete block construction) in central Florida. Like most Floridians I know that any projected path is at best an educated guess, and that hurricanes are rarely very predictable, but it gives me a time-line for reviewing the hurricane preparations here. We have water and non-perishable food for two weeks and medications for a month; the gas tank will need to be topped off, the kitty-carrier brought in from the Florida room, and the spare cell phone batteries recharged. Are we confident? Yes. Complacent? No. Despite solid construction, reasonable elevation, and good preparation, a hurricane can become a vicious threat. Hurricanes in general are most dangerous for people who don't have them often enough to maintain preparedness as a way of living, and who are unwilling to abandon property in order to save their lives.
Anne, Central Florida, US
Oh boy here we go again, just when we thought we were out of the woods for this season. Next few days watching projected paths deciding whether to evacuate/buy hurricane provisions. Roll on Nov 31st !!
Tony, Tampa, Florida
I live in Tampa, Florida. There has been heightened awareness in evaluating and preparing for hurricanes since last year when most of the state suffered through five of them. There are still locations that haven't totally recovered. Earlier this year I installed protective coverings for the windows and have upgraded the roof to meet current standards. Just keeping my fingers crossed!
Bob Walczak, Tampa, Florida
We moved from Bath, England in November 2003 so this is our second hurricane season. Last year we were lashed by Charley (exciting! except for the loss of electricity which meant no air conditioning). But this year we are more prepared, and have invested in a petrol-powered generator so at least we can run a few fans, a small TV and keep the fridge/freezer going. The next few days are crucial, but most people are prepared for the worst.
Jane Box, Fort Myers, Florida, USA
We are UK Ex-Pats living just North of Miami and we have had several 'warnings' over the past 3 years that have never amounted to any structural damage in the area we live in. The news is extremely over-hyped here for any kind of storm but quite frankly we have experienced worse in the UK on a blustery winters day up North. Its just so bizarre when a storm is approaching ; everywhere closes early, you have to queue for literally an hour to get gas, the supermarkets are full of panic-buyers getting stocks of water and tinned food and on Fox News it is 24 hour storm alert when even a palm tree frond in the road is considered 'breaking news'.
Melanie, Miami, Florida
We are in South east Florida just north of Miami. It is still no big deal here yet not much going on. We were affected by Katrina a Cat 1 and had some strong winds and without power 3 days. Nobody seems concerned yet. The only ones talking about Wilma are the news channels just looking to make news and hype people up here
Kathy, Miramar Fl USA
Come on Mother Nature, have a heart and give the Southern US a break! After 12 storms in only a year they certainly need one. No-one should have to go through the trauma of being evacuated and having to rebuild your life umpteen times. I pray that the worst is now over and residents can get back to some semblance of normality. Life since Katrina has been pretty bleak so far for thousands of Southern Americans after all.
Lukas, London, UK
All is business as usual in the capital. The wind has been slowly picking up throughout the morning. Leaden skies look likely to produce an imminent deluge...hoping the erratic course stays south of us.
Ian Skerrett, George Town, Grand Cayman
This is highly upsetting. This Wilma character seems headed straight for my area. Last year, we were without power for almost a month! I don't think I can do this again.
Chris Harding, Palm Beach Gardens, Florida, USA
My best friend lives in Fort Lauderdale, in the projected path. He's already moved out of his house and plans to leave Florida completely. I can only imagine what it must be like for the Gulf Coast.
G Steele, San Mateo, California, US
As a native Floridian and a journalist, I'm dreading the potential arrival of yet another hurricane. Please. Enough already. We surrender.
Christine Girardin, DeLand, Florida. USA
I moved to Sarasota 20 years ago from London and have experienced the aftermath of a few hurricanes in the State of Florida including Andrew in Miami. I have many friends on the Gulf Coast and a house there. Fortunately I am in Las Vegas where I also live. If this storm hits another major population area the USA economy is going down even further.
Michael Livingston, Sarasota, Florida