MIAMI, Florida (CNN) -- The first tropical depression of the 2009 Atlantic hurricane season formed off the coast of the eastern United States, forecasters said Thursday, but was not expected to threaten land.
Tropical Depression One was about 310 miles (500 kilometers) south of Providence, Rhode Island, and about 635 miles (1,020 kilometers) southwest of Halifax, Nova Scotia, on Thursday morning, according to the National Hurricane Center.
The depression, with maximum sustained winds of 35 mph (55 kph), was moving northeast at near 17 mph (27 kph) -- away from the U.S. coastline, forecasters said. Officials believe it will become a tropical storm over the next day or so, but will weaken or dissipate over colder waters by Saturday.
The Atlantic hurricane season officially begins Monday and runs through November. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration has predicted a "near-normal" season, with four to seven hurricanes likely.