Mexico is bracing itself for a battering from Hurricane Wilma.The storm has meant an early end to the beach holidays of thousands of tourists. Along the country’s Caribbean coast, they have been packing up and getting out. Some have left on four wheels. Most have flown to safety. Now however, asconditions worsen, the airport at the resort city of Cancun has been closed.
Many tourists, mostly Americans and Europeans, have spent the night at emergency shelters. Described as “potentially catastrophic,” Wilma was briefly the most intense Atlantic hurricane on record. The Category 4 storm, which has already proved deadly, is expected to gather strength. Hundreds of thousands of people are being moved out of low-lying areas in western provinces of Cuba. The nation takes pride in its record in coping with natural disasters. Wilma is also set to unleash its wrath on Florida. Forecasters believe it will hit late on Sunday. Residents of the US state are taking steps to protect themselves – stocking up and boarding up as the slow-moving storm approaches. Experts say the Atlantic has entered a period of heightened storm activity.They predict that it could last for another 20 years.