updated 7/22/2005 3:46:55 PM ET 2005-07-22T19:46:55

Tropical Storm Franklin headed north away from Florida and the Bahamas on Friday, though forecasters said its path remained uncertain.

The storm had sustained winds near 50 mph, above the 39 mph threshold for a tropical storm.

Franklin was moving north at 9 mph, according to the National Hurricane Center in Miami. The storm was expected to continue offshore from Florida to the Carolinas through the weekend, forecasters said.

At 2 p.m. EDT, the storm’s center was about 70 miles northeast of the Great Abaco Island in the northwestern Bahamas, or about 240 miles northeast of Miami. It was not predicted to become a hurricane within the next five days.

The storm may drop 2 to 4 inches of rain over the northern Bahamas, the hurricane center said.

Less than two full months into the current season, there have already been a record five named storms, including two major hurricanes — Dennis and Emily.

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