WASHINGTON (AFP) - Armies of volunteers, lawyers and federal agents will fan out across the US for Tuesday's elections amid mounting fears a record turnout will overload the voting system, sparking a ballot-box meltdown. Memories of the bitter 2000 election battle between George W. Bush and Al Gore, which was decided in the Supreme Court, still haunt Americans, and many believe systems adopted in its wake have merely complicated the process. Long lines have already been seen in many battleground states which have held early voting ahead of Tuesday's White House duel between Democrat Barack Obama and his Republican rival John McCain. Observers believe this trend will continue on Tuesday, with many voters being forced to wait for hours to cast their ballots. And with many states having dispensed with paper ballots after the Florida fiasco, there are concerns now over whether there will be enough touch-screen voting machines and if so whether they will stand up to the pressure. Civil rights groups and Internet-savvy watchdogs have organized thousands of volunteers to help voters encountering any difficulties, as well as to record and video in real-time any problems to download onto the Net. Some 800 federal observers are also being dispatched by the Department of Justice to 59 hot-spot areas in 23 states. "The Department of Justice will do all it can to help ensure that elections run as smoothly as possible " and equally important that the American people have confidence in our electoral process," said Attorney General Michal Mukasey in a statement. Of particular concern are young voters, many of whom are voting for the first time, and may not have all the documents handy they need and will not be anticipating long queues at campus polling stations. "We are going to work very hard to make sure that every vote is counted. But realistically we are not in a perfect world and we know that the system has some flaws," said Stephanie Young, communications associate with Rock the Vote. The non-partisan group has surpassed all records since it was set up in 1992 to encourage youth political participation, with 2.5 million people having downloaded registration forms from its website this year. Like other groups, Rock the Video, is in touch with a lawyers committee ready to provide instant advice to voters and even to legally challenge decisions by polling officials seeking to bar someone from voting. "We have a lot of volunteers on the ground, to provide people with hot chocolate and a little entertainment, perhaps by telling jokes," said Young. "Literally to ensure that young people are not getting distracted or discouraged by the long lines." The Election Protection Coalition, an alliance of civil rights groups, has set up a hotline 1-866-OUR-VOTE, administered by the Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights Under Law, and to monitor problems which will be posted in real time on OurVoteLive.org. "We, along with election officials and the media, will be able track trends and identify problem areas quickly so that we can remove any barriers that voters face as they cast their ballots," said Jonah Goldman, the committee's director of the National Campaign for Fair Elections. And Video the Vote has about 3,000 volunteer citizens who will be filming problems and uploading their video to the group's website. "We think a major story that's going to happen on election day is that there is not going to be enough voting machines. We are already seeing this in Florida," said the group's founder, film-maker Ian Inaba. In 2004 the race between Bush and Democrat John Kerry was ultimately decided in Ohio, where some polling stations had to stay open much longer than planned. This year many key states like Ohio, Florida, Colorado, Pennsylvania and Virginia are expecting record turnouts with some districts already predicting a unprecedented 90 percent voter-participation. The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) last week filed a lawsuit against Virginia officials alleging they were not prepared for the flood of some five million people who have registered to vote in the state. US media reported that a hearing has been set for Monday in the lawsuit, which alleges that the state has been particularly wanting in providing a sufficient number of voting machines in majority black districts. "I think our system is not voter friendly. It's not set up to make it easy for people to vote," Young said, arguing however that everybody was to blame. American people, he said should "march in the streets and say you are going to have to change this. It's hard to blame anybody for this but ourselves."