FORT RUCKER, Ala. (Jan. 29, 2010) -- In just a few short days, millions of people will gather for Super Bowl XLIV parties in homes, bars and restaurants across the country to watch what analysts have billed as a meeting of "super-sized offenses."

As these great gatherings start to take shape, officials at the U.S. Army Combat Readiness/Safety Center are reminding all party hosts and attendees to keep the "offenses" on the field.

"Super Bowl parties are no time to super-size food, drinks or risk," Col. Scott Thompson, deputy commander for the USACR/Safety Center, said. "Whether planning a party menu or attending an event with friends, keep this Super Bowl Sunday a safe and healthy one by employing proper risk management during all parts of the day."

Mitigating risk when it comes to hosting a Super Bowl parties means having a good plan and being a good host, according to officials at the Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) organization. A responsible party host not only ensures all guests have a good time but also works diligently to keep friends and family safe.

A key party element that often puts a guest's safety in jeopardy is alcohol. MADD officials offer several tips to help hosts plan a safe Super Bowl party. Have low-alcohol and alcohol-free drinks available and serve plenty of food like vegetables, cheese and dips so people are not drinking on an empty stomach. Plan activities like party games or door prize drawings to engage people and make for less active consumption of alcohol. Identify the non-drinking designated drivers in the group and offer them fun "mocktails." Before the first guest arrives, develop a plan to deal with guests who drink too much and be prepared to take away keys, call and pay for taxis or welcome overnight guests.

Mitigating risk when it comes to attending a Super Bowl party also means having a plan and watching out for friends and family members. Remember, if you plan to drink, have a designated driver and ensure that those who have been drinking also have a safe way to get home.

"A great Super Bowl party can quickly turn tragic if something bad happens," said Dr. Patricia LeDuc, USACR/Safety Center Human Factors Task Force director. "Fights, people being too drunk, injuries or a visit from the police can shut a party down in the blink of an eye and turn what could have been a great memory into a very regrettable occasion."

The team at the USACR/Safety Center stands ready to assist with safe party planning and risk management. Additional information about planning a safe party or staying safe on the roads, at the bars or at parties this weekend can be found by visiting <a href="https://safety.army.mil" target=Aca,!A?_blank"> https://safety.army.mil</a>.

"Like any successful Army operation, a successful party must be a place where every attendee not only has fun but also stays safe," Thompson said. "Whether you are cheering for the Saints or the Colts, know that we here at the Safety Center are cheering you on as you make the decisions you need to make this a safe Super Bowl weekend."

Page last updated Fri January 29th, 2010 at 11:32