UPDATE: Extent of Cozumel Damage Still Unclear
October 25, 2005
UPDATED: Itinerary Changes
Turnarounds in Florida Delayed
Hurricane Wilma Ties, Breaks Records
(10:50 a.m.) -- The extent of damage to Cozumel remains relatively unknown today, four days after Hurricane Wilma came ashore (the eye of the storm hovered above Cozumel and nearby Cancun for two days before heading to Florida).
A representative for the port tells us official updates will not be available until later this week.
Cruise lines including Royal Caribbean, Carnival and NCL have retooled this week's itineraries to avoid affected areas.
Click here for a full list of storm-related itinerary changes.
NCL has tentatively scheduled its Norwegian Sun to call in Cozumel on Friday, hopeful that the port will reopen by then. However, the Seattle Times reports that "One of three piers used by cruise ships visiting the scuba-diving resort of Cozumel disappeared in the storm, and a second pier was substantially damaged, according to a Web site note from divers based on the island."
Early news reports indicated that beach resorts were knee-deep in water and debris, and homes and hotels smashed, according to Reuters. Reuters has also published pictures of power lines lying in flooded streets in nearby Playa del Carmen. The Weather Channel reports that in Playa del Carmen, 1,000 homes are damaged, and water is up to the third floor of certain hotels.
On a brighter note, Costa Maya's pier and surrounding complex sustained no damage and continue to operate at 100 percent capacity, according to a representative for the port. The port is expecting to accommodate additional cruise ships on a short-term basis due to damage Cozumel incurred during Hurricane Wilma (calls at Cozumel have already been replaced or pushed back on several upcoming Western Caribbean itineraries).
We will continue to post information here as soon as we receive it, so please check back often.