(NEXSTAR) – After technical issues, delays and much anticipation over the largest-ever Powerball jackpot, lottery officials announced Tuesday one person matched all the winning numbers to take home the $2.04 billion grand prize.
If the winner opts for the cash payout, they’ll get an estimated $997.6 million lump sum.
The lottery announced the winning ticket — which matched all five numbers plus the Powerball — was sold in California. The ticket was sold at a gas station in Altadena, an unincorporated part of Los Angeles County, according to the California Lottery.
Another lucky person in Florida has earned a $2 million cash prize for matching five numbers, plus selecting Power Play.
Twenty-two other people in 16 states have won $1 million. Those winners are found in California, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Maryland, Michigan, Missouri, North Carolina, New Jersey, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Texas and Washington, according to Powerball’s official site.
Only four previous jackpots have topped $1 billion, but none of those are close to the current prize, which started at $20 million back on Aug. 6 and over three winless months has grown ever more massive.
Those who spend $2 on a Powerball ticket might wonder if something is wrong when dozens of drawings pass without a jackpot winner, but this is how the game is designed. With odds of 1 in 292 million, that means it’s unlikely anyone will win the prize until a growing jackpot attracts more players. And more ticket sales mean the lottery can raise more money for public programs, which is the point of the state lotteries.
But even if you didn’t win big this time around, there are eight other ways in which you can win with a Powerball ticket.
If any of your numbers match, hang onto your ticket and sign it. If you were to lose your unsigned winning ticket and another person finds it, they can claim it. Where you can claim your prize and the length of time you have to collect it will vary by jurisdiction.
Powerball is one of the most popular lottery games in the U.S. and is played in 45 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. The game has been played since 1992.
The next Powerball drawing is Wednesday at 10:59 p.m. ET, but the grand prize is back down to an estimated $20 million.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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