Super Bowl safety
It’s Super Bowl weekend, and ahead of the big game, public health officials are asking people not to host big parties that could turn into super-spreader events.
Dr. Anthony Fauci urged people to watch the game at home, pointing to coronavirus spikes that followed celebrations and holidays like Christmas and New Year’s. “You don’t want parties with people that you haven’t had much contact with,” he said this week. “You just don’t know if they’re infected, so as difficult as that is, at least this time around, just lay low and cool it.”
The game, a highly anticipated matchup between the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the Kansas City Chiefs at Tampa Bay’s Raymond James Stadium in Florida, will be very different. The stadium will be only about one-third full, with about 7,500 of the 25,000 seats filled by vaccinated health care workers. All 25,000 or so attendees will be given masks and hand sanitizer as they enter.
The Weeknd is headlining the halftime show, but for the first time in the 55-year history of the game, the main act will perform on a stage set up in the stands under strict coronavirus protocols intended to limit contact with the players and coaches.
If you still want to celebrate, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends hosting a virtual Super Bowl party or an outdoor gathering — although even outside it’s important to wear masks the entire time (except when eating).
The C.D.C. also said to try to avoid shouting, cheering loudly or singing around people from outside of your household, which can increase the amount of respiratory droplets in the air. Instead, clap, stomp your feet or use noisemakers. If you attend a gathering, the agency recommends bringing your own food, drinks, plates, cups and utensils.
One team is virus free. During the N.F.L.’s season, more than 700 players, coaches and other team personnel tested positive for the coronavirus. Only the Seattle Seahawks remained untouched by the virus. How did they do it?