Article published on 12 November 2009

CBC Releases Interesting Lottery Statistics

CBC releases online article on how much chance Canadians have in hitting the lottery jackpot
The Maple Gambling image gallery control requires that you have the Flash Player plugin installed and JavaScript enabled in your browser.

The CBC ran an interesting online article showing just how much of a chance Canadians really have of hitting the lottery jackpot.

But even if the odds are sometimes so low that it brinks on ridiculous, nobody can deny that that harbor a secret dream to be THAT lucky player to beat all odds and take home prizes that have reached $54.3 million - the highest lottery prize ever paid out in Canada in 2005.

Around one quarter of Canadians play the lottery on a weekly basis. CBC predicts that a $2 wager would put players in line to become a millionaire at odds of 1 to 14 million.

Games such as Lotto Max have odds of one in 28,663,528 on a $5 wager!

The report shows that a player is more likely to be killed in a terrorist attack when travelling (with odds of 1 to 650 000) or die of a flesh eating disease (one in a million).

The author of "What are the Odds?", Professor Mike Orkin at California State University described in the article the odds of hitting the Powerball lottery.

"Let's say you have one friend in Canada, and you put everybody in Canada's name on pieces of paper, and put them in a giant hat and draw one at random. Then, you are 2.5 times more likely to pick your one friend's name than you are to win the Powerball jackpot if you buy a single ticket."

Some people have considered the best way of increasing their chances, with the most extreme being to buy enough tickets to cover all possible number combinations.

The problem with this system is twofold, however. Firstly, it is extremely expensive. At $2 a ticket, the idea could set one back nearly $28 million.

The other problem is logistical.

"Theoretically you could try it," said the spokesman for the Ontario Lottery and Gaming Commission, Don Pister. "But I don't think your tickets could be processed in time for the draw."

Nevertheless, nobody can ignore those pictures of happy winners that appear in the newspaper after each big win. And logic says, if they can win, why can't the next one be me? With that in mind, it explains why some many Canadians enjoy their lottery respite each week.

Be the first to comment on this article!