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Associated Press

DES MOINES, Iowa — A traffic jam kept Powerball players waiting for nearly two hours to see if they won the jackpot.

A security official with the lottery got stuck in traffic Saturday on the way to a computer site in Clifton, N.J., that helps ensure the integrity of the draw, the Multi-State Lottery Association said.

The official is responsible for overseeing security for the computer system, which contains players' lottery numbers, while the balls come up in West Des Moines.

He made it to the site just before midnight Sunday, allowing the draw to proceed after a delay of about an hour and 45 minutes, said Chuck Strutt, the association's executive director.

"Security is more important than being embarrassed about delaying a drawing," Strutt said.

The security official's backup couldn't fill in because he was on active military duty, Strutt said.

Powerball, the nation's largest lottery, is played in 23 states, the District of Columbia and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

Each state that participates in Powerball has two computer systems, which must confirm they have an identical records of numbers.

The Clifton computer system pairs up with one in the Virgin Islands. New Jersey doesn't participate in the lottery.

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In a further glitch in Saturday's draw, the Clifton system had discrepancies with the Virgin Island system — meaning the number of winning tickets couldn't be immediately announced.

The problem was being resolved Sunday and wasn't expected to hold up future drawings, Strutt said.

No one correctly matched all six Powerball numbers in Saturday's drawing, which were 5-13-18-42-50 and Powerball 4.

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