When access to a meter cannot be gained and the customer fails to supply a meter-reading form in time for the billing operation, an estimated bill may be rendered. In cases of emergency, the utility may render estimated bills without reading meters or supplying meter-reading forms to customers. When a customer fails to return a meter-reading form under the customer meter-reading plan, an estimated bill may be rendered. Estimated bills shall be based on the customer's normal consumption for a corresponding period during the preceding months or any other method specifically authorized by the commission. Only in unusual cases or when approval is obtained from the customer shall more than two consecutive estimated bills be rendered, unless the customer fails to supply meter readings as provided in part 7820.3300.
If an estimated bill appears to be abnormal when a subsequent reading is obtained, the bill for the entire period shall be computed at a rate which contemplates the use of service during the entire period and the estimated bill shall be deducted. If there is reasonable evidence that the use occurred during only one billing period, the bill shall be so computed.
October 9, 2008