3/30/2012 - 11:10 AM
Mega Millions Jackpot Jumps to $640 Million
The Mega Millions jackpot continued its jaw-dropping climb Friday, increasing to $640 million - the world's largest jackpot. The cash value of the jackpot, also a world record, is $462 million.
Before the increase, the advertised jackpot was $540 million. This is the first time the jackpot has exceeded $600 million. Tonight's drawing will be the 19th in the current jackpot run, which was last hit Jan. 24 in Georgia.
Friday morning, the Multi-State Lottery Association (MUSL) that operates the game on behalf of 44 participating lotteries, including the Louisiana Lottery, announced an increase to Mega Millions' estimated jackpot size based on a surge in sales. In Louisiana, sales since Tuesday's Mega Millions drawing top $2.8 million and are expected to increase before tonight's drawing at 10 p.m.
The previous Mega Millions jackpot record was $390 million, split between two winning tickets in 2007.
Players should sign the back of their ticket immediately after purchasing for security purposes and treat their tickets like cash.
Mega Millions tickets must be purchased by 9 p.m. the night of the drawing. Drawings are broadcast live from Atlanta, Ga., on Official Lottery Draw Show TV stations, a list of which can be found on the Lottery's website.
Lottery ticket purchasers must be at least 21 years of age. The Lottery reminds players to play responsibly and that help for gambling problems is available by calling 1-877-770-7867.