Floridians are boarding up windows, buying supplies and praying Hurricane Wilma will go somewhere else, an all-too-familiar drill.
In Washington, Federal Emergency Management Agency spokeswoman Frances Marine says the government is working with state and local officials to inform residents in the event that an evacuation is needed.
The White House promises to remain on top of the situation, hoping to avoid a repeat of the slow initial response to Katrina. But Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff says the Federal Emergency Management Agency must be retooled to improve preparation and response to natural disasters.
Gov. Jeb Bush also says that Florida has ample supplies of food, water and ice ready to be brought to hard-hit areas. FEMA is also positioning those materials items in Jacksonville, Lakeland and Homestead in preparation for the storm.
State officials gas retailers haven't reported shortages.
Monroe County officials told visitors to leave the Keys today, and plan to order residents to evacuate tomorrow.
On the Net:National Hurricane Center: http://www.nhc.noaa.gov