British nationals forced to leave their belongings in hotels when they fled Hurricane Sandy are being issued with emergency passports to help them get home, a senior UK diplomat in New York said on Wednesday.

Danny Lopez, British consul-general to New York, said consular staff were doing everything they can to help Britons stuck in the city after the devastation caused by the superstorm.

Staff have already issued emergency passports to 10 people to help them get back to Britain, he said, with a steady flow of people with similar problems expected over the next few days.

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Residents walk by the remains of the historic Rockaway boardwalk that was washed away during Hurricane Sandy

Mr Lopez said the main problem was people who had to leave possessions in hotels when they fled for safety ahead of the storm's arrival on Monday night, and now could not get them back in time for their flights.

"The two main airports, JFK and Newark, opened up today. Currently both airports are not at full service in any way, so it's a limited service but there are a number of flights coming in and out," he said.

"From a British perspective, the main problem we have have had to deal with are visitors who had to leave the hotels where they were, due to this dangling crane on 57th Street.

"They had to leave and haven't been able to return to get their possessions, which included in many cases their passports and documents.

"What we have been dealing with today are passengers who have come to the consul for emergency passports."

He said 10 people were issued with emergency documents today and the consul also contacted their hotels, which had agreed to send their belongings on.

"There are a number of others who are not flying today, tomorrow, or Friday and therefore they will be wanting to see if they can get back to their hotels and recover everything and, if not, they can get emergency passports as well," he said.

"I anticipate over the next few days we will have a steady flow of people.

"For the hotels that were affected, what we did over the last few days is make sure that we made contact with all British nationals and offered consular assistance where needed.

"The majority of people were first taken to a shelter and then to other hotels."

He assured Britons: "We have the resilience and consular team here to be able to deal with any eventuality.

"From our perspective, what I have got is a very strong resilient consular team who are able to deal with these inquiries."

Mr Lopez said New York was well prepared for the arrival of Sandy, which in turn meant a lot of travellers were also prepared.

With one third of the city without power, he said the devastating effects of the superstorm are obvious, but is confident of New York's ability to "bounce back".

"This is a very resilient city. What was experienced on Monday night was very big.

"The emergency responders were absolutely first-class. The advice prior to the hurricane arriving was excellent.

"The reality is that one third of Manhattan still has no power, which is a very big proportion. At night-time, Manhattan is like nothing I have ever seen.

"Millions of people in between New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut are still with no power.

"There are buses but there's no subway and there is likely to be no mass transport for several days.

"There is a sense that the city has been through something incredibly devastating over the last 48 hours."

He added: "I think it will take some time for the city to be back up and running but have absolutely no doubt that this city can cope and has the resilience to bounce back as soon as possible."

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  • Barack Obama, Donna Vanzant

    President Barack Obama, left, embraces Donna Vanzant, right, during a tour of a neighborhood effected by superstorm Sandy, Wednesday, Oct. 31, 2012 in Brigantine, N.J. Vanzant is a owner of North Point Marina, which was damaged by the storm. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

  • Barack Obama, Chris Christie, Bob Menendez

    President Barack Obama, center, and and Gov. Chris Christie meet with local residents as they tour neighborhood effected by superstorm Sandy, Wednesday, Oct. 31, 2012 in Brigantine, N.J. Also with them is Sen. Bob Menendez, D-N.J., left. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

  • Passengers walk towards the Black Falcon Cruise Terminal in Boston, Wednesday, Oct. 31, 2012, where three of the New York bound cruise ships which were diverted after superstorm Sandy were docked. Sandy, the storm that made landfall Monday, caused multiple fatalities, halted mass transit and cut power to more than 6 million homes and businesses. (AP Photo/Josh Reynolds)

  • Debbie Baker-Star

    A vehicle is seen in a sinkhole as bus driver Debbie Baker-Star drives a school bus to pick up stranded people following superstorm Sandy, Wednesday, Oct. 31, 2012, in Seaside Heights, N.J. Sandy, the storm that made landfall Monday, caused multiple fatalities, halted mass transit and cut power to more than 6 million homes and businesses. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)

  • Barack Obama, Frank Lautenberg, Bob Menendez

    President Barack Obama, center, talks with a local resident as he tours a neighborhood effected by superstorm Sandy, Wednesday, Oct. 31, 2012 in Brigantine, N.J. Walking with Obama are Sen. Frank Lautenberg, D-N.J., and Sen. Bob Menendez, D-N.J., far right. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

  • Barack Obama, Chris Christie

    President Barack Obama and Gov. Chris Christie meet with residents of a local neighborhood effected by superstorm Sandy, Wednesday, Oct. 31, 2012 in Brigantine, N.J. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

  • Passengers walk towards the Black Falcon Cruise Terminal in Boston, Wednesday, Oct. 31, 2012, where three of the New York bound cruise ships which were diverted after superstorm Sandy were docked. Sandy, the storm that made landfall Monday, caused multiple fatalities, halted mass transit and cut power to more than 6 million homes and businesses. (AP Photo/Josh Reynolds)

  • Barack Obama, Craig Fugate

    President Barack Obama waves as he follows Federal Emergency Management Agency administrator Craig Fugate onto Air Force One at Atlantic City International Airport in Atlantic City, N.J., Wednesday, Oct. 31, 2012. Obama traveled to region to take an aerial tour of the Atlantic Coast in New Jersey in areas damaged by superstorm Sandy. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

  • Sand from the beach is seen up to the windows of a home as a vehicle sits on its side partially buried in sand following superstorm Sandy, Wednesday, Oct. 31, 2012, in Seaside Heights, N.J. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)

  • Derek Vanderkooy washes mud from his garage in the wake of superstorm Sandy, Wednesday, Oct. 31, 2012, in Toms River, N.J. People in the coastal corridor battered by superstorm Sandy took the first cautious steps Wednesday to reclaim routines upended by the disaster, even as rescuers combed neighborhoods strewn with debris and scarred by floods and fire. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)

  • Part of the boardwalk is seen after it crashed through the side of a house in Lavellette, N.J., during superstorm Sandy, Wednesday, Oct. 31, 2012. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)

  • Sand from the beach is seen up to the windows of a home as a vehicle sits on its side following superstorm Sandy, Wednesday, Oct. 31, 2012, in Seaside Heights, N.J. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)

  • Leigh Dworkin, right, waits for a slice of pizza as Carlos Quizhplema, left, and Rosa Rosas work behind the counter at Frank's Trattoria, in New York Wednesday Oct. 31, 2012. The establishment had water but no electricity or phone service. Quizhplema rode his bicycle 3 hours from the Flushing section in the Queens borough of New York to get to work. (AP Photo/Tina Fineberg)

  • Residents of Rockaway Beach receive donations of water, pampers, socks and gloves after hurricane Sandy Wednesday, Oct. 31, 2012, in the Queens borough of New York. (AP Photo/Frank Franklin II)

  • Anthony Rivera, right, hands out bottled water to residents of Rockaway Beach while they wait on line for pampers, socks and gloves provided by The Legacy Center, after hurricane Sandy Wednesday, Oct. 31, 2012, in the Queens borough of New York. (AP Photo/Frank Franklin II)

  • A home that was lifted from its foundation sits in the middle of the street as pool of water surrounds it following superstorm Sandy, Wednesday, Oct. 31, 2012, in Seaside Heights, N.J. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)

  • An oceanfront home is destroyed in Mantoloking, N.J., on Oct. 31, 2012. Sandy, the storm that made landfall Monday, caused multiple fatalities, halted mass transit and cut power to more than 6 million homes and businesses. (AP Photo/Wayne Parry)

  • Barack Obama, Craig Fugate, Jack Lew

    President Barack Obama exits the Marine One helicopter on the South Lawn of the White House in Washington, on Wednesday, Oct. 31, 2012, after touring superstorm Sandy damage in New Jersey. Seen in the passenger windows at right are Federal Emergency Management Agency administrator Craig Fugate, and White House Chief of Staff Jack Lew. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)

  • Passengers walk towards the Black Falcon Cruise Terminal in Boston, Wednesday, Oct. 31, 2012, where three of the New York bound cruise ships which were diverted after superstorm Sandy were docked. Sandy, the storm that made landfall Monday, caused multiple fatalities, halted mass transit and cut power to more than 6 million homes and businesses. (AP Photo/Josh Reynolds)

  • A front end loader is used to move mounts of sand off Seabreeze Avenue in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy on Wednesday, Oct. 31, 2012, in Coney Island, N.Y. Two days after superstorm Sandy rampaged across the Northeast, killing at least 63 people, New York struggled Wednesday to find its way. Swaths of the city were still without power, and all of it was torn from its daily rhythms. (AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews)

  • An oceanfront home is destroyed in Mantoloking, N.J., on Oct. 31, 2012. Sandy, the storm that made landfall Monday, caused multiple fatalities, halted mass transit and cut power to more than 6 million homes and businesses. (AP Photo/Wayne Parry)

  • City workers clear mud from a subway entry in the aftermath of superstorm Sandy on Wednesday, Oct. 31, 2012, in the Coney Island section of New York. Two days after superstorm Sandy rampaged across the Northeast, killing at least 63 people, New York struggled Wednesday to find its way. Swaths of the city were still without power, and all of it was torn from its daily rhythms. (AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews)

  • A car from a kiddie ride from the Seaside Heights NJ boardwalk lies half buried in the sand of Mantoloking, N.J. _ about 8 miles to the north from where it originated_ on Wednesday, Oct. 31, 2012. The car was carried by the ocean from the amusement pier that was destroyed in superstorm Sandy. Most of the multimillion-dollar homes along this old-money stretch of the Jersey shore were seriously damaged by pounding surf, wild wind and, in some cases, fire from ruptured gas lines. Numerous homes were destroyed, and some were obliterated, leaving behind just empty sand or maybe a few broken pilings jutting up out of the surf. (AP Photo/Wayne Parry)

  • ga1101storm gard

    The Fun Town Pier in Seaside Heights, N.J. was heavily damaged by superstorm Sandy. (Photo by David Gard/The Star-Ledger, POOL)

  • The entrance to the Battery Park Underpass in lower Manhattan is filled with water and debris, Wednesday, Oct. 31, 2012 in New York. Sandy, the storm that made landfall Monday, caused multiple fatalities, halted mass transit and cut power to more than 6 million homes and businesses. (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan)

  • Julio Serrano power sawa a tree uprooted in the aftermath of superstorm Sandy Wednesday, Oct. 31, 2012, in Coney Island, N.Y. Sandy, the storm that made landfall Monday, caused multiple fatalities, halted mass transit and cut power to more than 6 million homes and businesses. (AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews)

  • This Wednesday, Oct. 31 2012 photo shows one of many destroyed oceanfront homes in Mantoloking, N.J. 2012 in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy. Most of the multimillion-dollar homes along this old-money stretch of the Jersey shore were seriously damaged by pounding surf, wild wind and, in some cases, fire from ruptured gas lines. Numerous homes were destroyed, and some were obliterated, leaving behind just empty sand or maybe a few broken pilings jutting up out of the surf.. (AP Photo/Wayne Parry)

  • A truck from the New York City Department of Transportation is submerged at the entrance to the Battery Park Underpass in lower Manhattan, Wednesday, Oct. 31, 2012. Sandy, the storm that made landfall Monday, caused multiple fatalities, halted mass transit and cut power to more than 6 million homes and businesses. (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan)

  • A truck from the New York City Department of Transportation is submerged at the entrance to the Battery Park Underpass in lower Manhattan, Wednesday, Oct. 31, 2012. Sandy, the storm that made landfall Monday, caused multiple fatalities, halted mass transit and cut power to more than 6 million homes and businesses. (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan)

  • Water flows past debris from a destroyed home Wednesday, Oct. 31, 2012, in Mantoloking N.J. Hurricane Sandy caused the ocean to cut a channel through to the bay, shown flowing here, which effectively cut the borough in two. Most of the multimillion-dollar homes along this old-money stretch of the Jersey shore were seriously damaged by pounding surf, wild wind and, in some cases, fire from ruptured gas lines. Numerous homes were destroyed, and some were obliterated, leaving behind just empty sand or maybe a few broken pilings jutting up out of the surf. (AP Photo/Wayne Parry)

  • FILE - In this Tuesday, Oct. 30, 2012 file photo, the remains of a fallen tree litter the roof of a house in North Salem, N.Y. Two boys in the house were killed when the tree crashed through the roof during superstorm Sandy. (AP Photo/Jim Fitzgerald)

  • The planks of a boardwalk are all that remain after superstorm Sandy, Wednesday, Oct. 31, 2012, in Lavallette, N.J. New Jersey's delicate barrier islands, long and slender strips of land cherished by generations of sunbathing vacationers and full-time residents alike, are a hazardous wasteland of badly eroded shore, ruined beachfront homes, flooded streets and damaged utilities. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)

  • ga1101storm gard

    The Fun Town Pier in Seaside Heights has been heavily damaged. Owner Billy Major surveys the damage Wednesday, Oct. 31, 2012. Only four of the rides on the pier survived superstorm Sandy. (AP Photo/Star-Ledger, David Gard/POOL)

  • FILE - In this Tuesday, Oct. 30, 2012 file photo, a firefighter leaves the destroyed home in Pasadena, Md where Donald Cannata Sr. was killed overnight when a tree fell on it during superstorm Sandy. (AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana)

  • Shopping carts full of food damaged by superstorm Sandy await disposal at the Fairway supermarket in the Red Hook section of the Brooklyn borough of New York, Wednesday, Oct. 31, 2012. The food was contaminated by flood waters that rose to approximately four feet in the store during the storm. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig)

  • Peter Green looks at the wreckage of his oceanfront home in Bay Head, N.J. on Oct. 31, 2012. He says youths stole golf clubs from the ruins of his home on a stretch of Jersey shore that was devastated by Hurricane Sandy. (AP Photo/Wayne Parry)

  • A helicopter flies above a deserted, sand-covered stretch of Broadway in Long Beach, N.Y., in the aftermath of superstorm Sandy, Wednesday, Oct. 31, 2012. According to police, the city of Long Beach is currently under a 7 p.m. curfew, with violators subject to arrest. (AP Photo/Jason DeCrow)

  • Rescue workers check a home for fuel leaks and other types of damage, Wednesday, Oct. 31, 2012, in the Staten Island borough of New York. Sandy, the storm that made landfall Monday, caused multiple fatalities, halted mass transit and cut power to more than 6 million homes and businesses. (AP Photo/ John Minchillo)

  • A damaged flag stands among the remnants of the boardwalk on Rockaway Beach the damage caused during hurricane Sandy, Wednesday, Oct. 31, 2012, in the Queens borough of New York. (AP Photo/Frank Franklin II)

  • A passenger inspects the water level around his vehicle as multiple cars drive through a flooded street, Wednesday, Oct. 31, 2012, in the Staten Island borough of New York. Sandy, the storm that made landfall Monday, caused multiple fatalities, halted mass transit and cut power to more than 6 million homes and businesses. (AP Photo/ John Minchillo)

  • Men throw food in a dumpster that was damaged by flooding at the Fairway supermarket in the Red Hook section of the Brooklyn borough of New York, Wednesday, Oct. 31, 2012. The food was contaminated by flood waters that rose to approximately four feet in the store during the storm. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig)

  • A National Guard vehicle drives along a deserted, sand-covered stretch of Broadway in Long Beach, N.Y., in the aftermath of superstorm Sandy, Wednesday, Oct. 31, 2012. According to police, the city of Long Beach is currently under a 7 p.m. curfew, with violators subject to arrest. (AP Photo/Jason DeCrow)

  • A woman stands in a street flooded by superstorm Sandy, Wednesday, Oct. 31, 2012, in the Staten Island borough of New York. Sandy, the storm that made landfall Monday, caused multiple fatalities, halted mass transit and cut power to more than 6 million homes and businesses. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)

  • Madelyn, left, and Aida Pai, right, walk their dog Gigi underneath what is left of the boardwalk at Rockaway Beach Wednesday, Oct. 31, 2012, in the New York City borough of Queens. Two days after Superstorm Sandy rampaged across the Northeast, killing at least 63 people, New York struggled Wednesday to find its way. Swaths of the city were still without power, and all of it was torn from its daily rhythms. (AP Photo/Frank Franklin II)

  • Heavy equipment is used to clear away sand from Broadway in Long Beach, N.Y., in the aftermath of superstorm Sandy, Wednesday, Oct. 31, 2012. (AP Photo/Jason DeCrow)

  • State police check motorists' identification in the aftermath of superstorm Sandy, Wednesday, Oct. 31, 2012, in Long Beach, N.Y. According to police, the city of Long Beach is currently under a 7 p.m. curfew, with violators subject to arrest. (AP Photo/Jason DeCrow)

  • The interior of a beachfront home is revealed after superstorm Sandy blew the wall away, Wednesday, Oct. 31, 2012, in Seaside Heights, N.J. New Jersey's delicate barrier islands, long and slender strips of land cherished by generations of sunbathing vacationers and full-time residents alike, are a hazardous wasteland of badly eroded shore, ruined beachfront homes, flooded streets and damaged utilities. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)

  • Lisa Kravchenko, of Staten Island, stands amongst flood debris in her princess Halloween costume, Wednesday, Oct. 31, 2012, in the Staten Island borough of New York. Sandy, the storm that made landfall Monday, caused multiple fatalities, halted mass transit and cut power to more than 6 million homes and businesses. (AP Photo/ John Minchillo)

  • Joseph Leader, Metropolitan Transportation Authority Vice President and Chief Maintenance Officer, walks around massive fallen beams and other debris in the South Ferry 1 train station Wednesday, Oct. 31, 2012, in New York. Huge amounts of debris and as much as 20 feet of water fills the station and tunnel in the wake of superstorm Sandy. (AP Photo/Craig Ruttle)

  • Mike Cappucci, 46, of Staten Island, surveys the damage to his home after boats from a nearby harbor were driven inland by floodwaters, Wednesday, Oct. 31, 2012, in the Staten Island borough of New York. Sandy, the storm that made landfall Monday, caused multiple fatalities, halted mass transit and cut power to more than 6 million homes and businesses. (AP Photo/ John Minchillo)

  • Barack Obama

    The Marine One helicopter carrying President Barack Obama lands on the South Lawn of the White House in Washington, on Wednesday, Oct. 31, 2012, after the President toured superstorm Sandy damage in New Jersey. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)