The South Dakota Lottery has asked a private company to explain why connections to the central lotto computer system failed, leaving many retailers unable to sell lotto tickets for nearly 2 1/2 hours last Saturday night.
It was the third network outage since early July, said Clint Harris, executive director of the Lottery.
Phone lines and equipment connecting the Lottery and retail outlets to a central lotto computer system in Dover, Del., and backup site in Sharon Hill, Pa., failed.
It kept most of the 349 lotto retailers from selling tickets for the Powerball, Dakota Cash, Wild Card and Hot Lotto games, Harris said, and came on a night when the Powerball jackpot was $102 million.
Some retailers with a dial-up phone connection to the central system were able to function normally, he said.
Harris said the outage apparently was a mix of phone line failure and some outdated equipment, and that the private vendor - IGT Online Entertainment Systems - is to provide a report by Oct. 24.
An estimated $25,000 in lotto sales were lost in the two hours the network was down on Saturday, the Lottery said. It said an Aug. 30-31 outage reduced lotto sales by $60,000, while a July 9 outage was brief and did not affect overall sales.