A tropical-storm warning remains in effect for the Bahamas as a slow-moving system heads toward the region with 35 mph sustained winds and higher gusts, the National Hurricane Center said.
The tropical depression is expected to gain strength as it heads northward up the Atlantic and could become a tropical storm by Sunday, then develop into Hurricane Cristobal by early Tuesday, said Will Ulrich, a meteorologist for the National Weather Service.
According to the current track, the storm will be about 150 to 200 miles off the Florida coast Wednesday, Ulrich said. The impact will mostly be marine with strong surf and rip currents, he said.
"That track is certainly not definitive by any means," he said.
It's a good reminder for people to make sure they are prepared for a hurricane.
The slow-moving storm could dump 4 to 8 inches of rain on the Bahamas through Tuesday, the NHC said.
On Friday, heavy rains and tropical-storm force winds of about 40 mph drenched Puerto Rico and Hispaniola.
Federal forecasters in August downgraded their outlook for the 2014 Atlantic hurricane season, predicting below-normal activity with seven to 12 named storms, and no more than two expected to reach major-hurricane status.
A major hurricane is considered to be Category 3 or above with sustained winds hitting at least 111 mph.
So far this year two hurricanes — Arthur and Bertha — have developed in the Atlantic. Only Arthur, a Category 2 storm, made landfall, on North Carolina's Outer Banks in early July.
A typical season has 12 named storms, with six hurricanes, and three becoming Category 3 storms.
In its August outlook, the agency said cooler-than-average temperatures in the tropical Atlantic Ocean would make it difficult for larger storms to develop.
Reuters contributed to this report. firstname.lastname@example.org or 407-420-5471