$70m Powerball jackpot sparks rush on newsagencies

What would you do if you were suddenly $70 million richer?

It was a question being pondered in newsagency queues across Australia, as customers waited to buy tickets in Thursday night's potentially record-breaking $70 million Powerball draw.

If he were to scoop the prize, newsagent Rajie Verma might consider putting on a few more staff.

The owner of the Central Pyrmont Newsagency has been run off his feet after last week's $50 million prize failed to find a winner, resulting in this week's jackpot.

"We have been flat out. All of a sudden there will be 20, 30 people lining up," Mr Verma said.

"Lunch time is definitely a busy time, but actually after lunch yesterday was busy too. It just carried right on."

If there is a single winner, the $70 million prize would be the largest single lottery ticket prize in Australian history. 

Last year, a group of female friends from Queensland shared $70 million, an Australian record, after using their change from lunch to pick up an Oz Lotto ticket.

"We regularly meet up for lunch and after we pay the bill, there's always a couple of dollars left over," one of the winners said at the time. 

"I told everyone on the last occasion to throw in some loose change and I'll buy a lotto ticket in a big draw before Christmas.

"My husband told me he wanted to buy a race horse but I said 'It's not your prize'."

Elissa Lewis, a spokeswoman for Tatts Lotteries, said Thursday night's Powerball would be the largest lotto jackpot draw on offer in Australia this year. The last division one Powerball prize was won seven weeks ago.

About 5 million players, or about 30 per cent of Australia's adult population, were expected to participate in Thursday night's draw, according to Tatts Lotteries.

Of those entries, about 3 million tickets were expected to be bought on Thursday, resulting in a rush on newsagencies like Mr Verma's.

Ms Lewis said about 5000 tickets would be sold every minute during trading hours on Thursday.

If no one is lucky enough to scoop the prize, it will jackpot again next week.

The $70 million Powerball jackpot draw will take place on Thursday night about 8.40pm AEST, and the result will be broadcast on Channel 7.

This article $70m Powerball jackpot sparks rush on newsagencies was originally published in Brisbane Times.