Hurricane Wilma was the most intense hurricane ever recorded in the Atlantic basin. Wilma was the twenty-second storm (including the subtropical storm discovered in reanalysis), thirteenth hurricane, sixth major hurricane, and fourth Category 5 hurricane of the record-breaking 2005 season.
Wilma made several landfalls, with the most destructive effects felt in the Yucatán Peninsula of Mexico, Cuba, and the U.S. state of Florida. At least 62 deaths were reported, and damage is estimated at over $29.1 billion ($20.6 billion in the US; 2005 US dollars), ranking Wilma among the top 5 costliest hurricanes ever recorded in the Atlantic and the fourth costliest storm in U.S. history.
A large area of disturbed weather developed across much of the Caribbean Sea from an upper-level low across the southwestern Atlantic Ocean. A broad area of low pressure developed on October 13 to the southeast of Jamaica, and slowly became more concentrated as upper-level wind shear gradually decreased. Dvorak classifications began on October 14, and by late October 15 the surface circulation in the system became well-enough defined, with sufficiently organized deep convection, for the National Hurricane Center to designate the system as Tropical Depression Twenty-Four while located about 220 miles (345 km) east-southeast of Grand Cayman.