Tropical Storm Ernesto, downgraded as it lost its strength, could become a hurricane again, weather experts have been saying it is the first of the season. So far, the Dominican Republic and southeastern Cuba have taken a lashing. Cuba evacuated 600,000 people to safety, away from the most exposed coastal and mountain villages. New Orleans breathed easier as Ernesto veered away.
Almost a year to the day since Hurricane Katrina swamped the Gulf of Mexico, Florida prepared for the worst. It has been hit by eight hurricanes in the past two years. A state of emergency has been declared and tourists ordered out of the vulnerable Florida Keys