LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- Portland neighbors say they're drowning in water bills that are twice the normal cost.

The problems on one block uncovered a bigger issue for Louisville Water Company customers.

There is sticker shock on St. Xavier Street.

"Ridiculous," said Joyce Johnson, a Louisville Water Company customer. "They lost their mind."

"No," said Terry Ormond, another Louisville Water Company customer. "It's outrageous." 

These Portland residents know something is wrong with their water bills.

"I've never received a bill as high as this," said Patricia Thornton. 

There's a bill for $295. Some were charged two times -- even three times -- more than normal.

"This month was $378.39," said Thornton.

Yet when they called the water company about the meters, this is the answer they got:

"They said that they didn't read it during the winter months when it snowed and they had to estimate our bills," Ormond said.

The rankled customers found answers frustrating and flawed.

"I told them that everybody on the block had a higher bill and he told me that my bill had nothing to do with anyone else's bill," said Brenda Rankins, another customer.

We interviewed a spokesperson for Louisville Water Company first thing Tuesday morning.

"I can explain that," said representatives Kelley Dearing Smith.

Dearing Smith told us flooding and snow kept meter readers from accessing boxes in some Louisville neighborhoods. The bills come out bi-monthly. Those customers got estimates, and the new charges reflect the actual usage.

A Louisville Water Company meter reader showed up on St. Xavier street while WDRB was interviewing neighbors. He had been sent to check Rankins meter again, The worker told Rankins, "The reading is right. Everything is right on there." But by mid afternoon Tuesday the Louisville Water Company  had changed its story.

Spokeswoman Dearing Smith invited WDRB back for a second interview saying, "We just recently transitioned into a new billing system and when that old data transitioned into the new system, we had a pocket of customers where that estimated amount didn't come off their bill. "

And the changes don't just affect St. Xavier Street. Dearing Smith said 73 customers throughout the city are impacted.

Roy Dupin was the first to get the word.

"They (Louisville Water Company) said they made a horrible mistake on my water bill and they were going to lower it down to $138 dollars," Dupin said.

"We all make mistakes and we apologize," said Dearing Smith "But when you recognize it, you go back and fix it."

The water company will issue new bills and reach out to affected customers individually. If you think you may have been overcharged, call the Louisville Water Company at (502) 583-6610.

Copyright 2015 by WDRB News. All rights reserved.