TWO sisters from Gwent who took their daughters shopping for a treat weekend in Manhattan were trapped in their hotel room as Superstorm Sandy hit New York.
Julia Davey and her sister Hayley Grew, from Caerleon, took their daughters Abigail, 17, and Danielle, 16, for a weekend away during half-term as a reward for doing well in their exams.
Mrs Davey, who spoke to the Argus from their hotel on 45th Street, said: "On Sunday afternoon we tried to book to see a Broadway show, but were told we could only see a matinee as Broadway was closing on Sunday night. That was when we realised how bad the storm was.
"When the show finished and we came out, there was carnage on the streets, everyone was rushing, trying to get back to where they were staying," she said.
"Yesterday, we went out at 9am to get supplies. We were only in the shop for 15 minutes but during that time the wind had picked up. After that, we were told to stay in our hotel room."
Mrs Davey and Mrs Grew, who both work for freight company Concordia International, have had to miss work, while their daughters have had to take time off from their part-time jobs.
The family's hotel is just streets away from where a large crane on top of a luxury Manhattan skyscraper has partly collapsed.
After staying in their hotel room all day on Monday, the family could not sleep during the night due to high winds blowing between high-rise buildings, said Mrs Davey.
"It sounded like sirens or howling," she said. "We keep expecting to hear a crash."
The family hope to fly back to the UK on Saturday night.
Sandy Regulski, an Argus field sales representative, is on holiday in New York and said the city feels more like Newport on a Sunday morning.
She said: "I have spoken to a local policeman who informed us that NYC will close down until the storm has passed. Hopefully within the next 36 hours life will return to normal.
"The main reason for politicians' panic is that Sandy is being reported as the worst ever north east hurricane. Battery Park at the southern end of Manhattan has a nine-foot wall which the news stations are saying is under threat."