For a few hours overnight Monday, many people who played the Powerball lottery in Iowa believed they held winning lottery tickets.
But with the cold dawn on Tuesday, they realized their dreams of riches were not to be. The state lottery had reported the wrong winning numbers.
The wrong numbers were posted statewide from about 12:30 a.m. to 7:15 a.m. Tuesday, lottery officials said, before they were corrected.
Once the error was realized, no tickets could be cashed on Tuesday as officials worked to correctly post the results and update their machines. By 3:30 p.m. Tuesday, the correct numbers were posted and winners were able to get their prizes.
Before the numbers were corrected, those who believed they had won based on the incorrect numbers were able to collect those winnings. According to the lottery, the prizes based on the incorrect numbers ranged from $4 to $200.
“We at the Iowa Lottery sincerely apologize for the interruption,” officials said on Wednesday.
Lottery officials said the wrong numbers were posted because of a “human reporting error.”
The next Powerball drawing is Saturday and the jackpot is estimated at $400 million.