Des Moines, Iowa — Powerball announced Monday night that the world-record $1.9 billion drawing “has been delayed due to a participating lottery needing extra time to complete the required security protocols.”
“Powerball has strict security requirements that must be met by all 48 lotteries before a drawing can occur. When the required security protocols are complete, the drawing will be performed under the supervision of lottery security officials and independent auditors,” a statement said.
In an emailed statement to queries from The Associated Press, the Multi-State Lottery Association said the delay was the result of a participating lottery that needed additional time to process its sales. “We still plan on holding the Powerball drawing tonight,” the statement said, although no timing was provided.
Powerball did not say which state was causing the delay.
When the issue has been resolved, the winning numbers will be posted on Powerball.com and a recording of the drawing will be available on the Powerball YouTube channel.
The jackpot is nearly $400 million larger than the previous record jackpot and will keep growing until someone wins the pot of gold.
A winner who chooses an annuity, paid annually over 29 years, would get the estimated $1.9 billion payout. Nearly all winners instead opt for cash, which for Monday’s drawing would be $929.1 million.
The grand prize rose to $1.9 billion over the weekend, a record for any lottery, anywhere, for the last drawing on Saturday.
Only four previous jackpots have topped $1 billion, but none were close to the current prize, which started at $20 million back on Aug. 6 and over three winless months has grown ever more massive. No one has won the jackpot since Aug. 3.
Anticipation over the lottery’s estimated prize fund has grown steadily over the past three months, as dozens of Powerball rounds passed without anyone taking home the jackpot in full. The last grand prize went to a winning ticket sold in Pennsylvania in early August, and the prize fund has been increasing since then.
How to play Powerball
Interested players can purchase Powerball tickets, sold at $2 per play, in 45 US states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands, according to lottery officials. But, while the odds of winning any prize during a Powerball drawing are said to be roughly 1 in 25, a player’s chances of securing the jackpot are significantly lower, at about 1 in 292 million, officials say.
When a Powerball ticket is purchased, the player is asked to choose five numbers between 1 and 69, and one number between 1 and 26, for a total of six figures printed on a play slip. Those who would rather not choose numbers themselves can opt for the lottery terminal to choose their numbers randomly.
Smaller prizes are given out to players who hold tickets with numbers that partially match the sequence announced during a drawing. In order to win the jackpot, a ticket must match all six numbers called, including the final Powerball number.
— Emily Mae Czachor contributed reporting.