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The challenges of 2020, just don’t seem to end!
The wildfires in Oregon have caused 115 Oregon lottery retailers to lose connection to the fiber optic cables that assist in selling most of the lottery games.
According to the reports published by the lottery, 95 lottery retailers in the Portland area and 25 on the coast were unable to sell a few traditional lottery games like Mega Millions and Powerball, Keno, and even video lottery games. The retailers were able to sell only a few instant scratch-off games! The fire damaged the fiber optic cables to such an extent that it hindered the selling of lottery tickets majorly.
As per the Oregon Lottery Staff, the equipment that was used by the lottery retailers had a dedicated circuit that was used to exchange information between the retailers and the central lottery system, which was damaged by the fire, and anything that relied on that network will not be available if the connection is lost.
The fiber cables are operated by CenturyLink, a telecommunications company and internet provider. Since the problem has erupted, the company has been working to get them back online and function properly again.
As per the Oregon Lottery, the affected retailers make a small percentage of the total retailer network which amounts to around 4,000. These fires have impacted the lottery retailers majorly, though the officials are trying hard to resolve the issue as soon as possible.
The blackout caused by the fires, impacted other major businesses as well, including bars, restaurants, convenience stores, and delis, which are already dealing with the economic pressures of the pandemic. The business owners are worried that the shutdown lottery games will cost them hundreds of dollars in revenue per day.
Swimming through all the challenges - COVID-19 and wildfires, the lottery sales is just 9% under, as compared to the last year’s sales. As per senior Oregon Lottery officials, it is still a good place to be in.
The Oregon Lottery is urging the players as well as the retailers to wait patiently as they are working hard to bring the network back on track.
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