PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — For the first time in state history, both PGE and Pacific Power shut off power in Oregon and Washington over the weekend, with the hope of preventing wildfires.

It comes two years after PGE made the call to shut off power to some in the Sandy Corridor before the Labor Day fires began.

Pacific Power and PGE restored power for tens of thousands of customers by Sunday night.

Rick Kneuven lives off SW Skyline Blvd., an area impacted by the planned outages. He was one of 37,000 PGE customers who got their electricity shut off during the high fire danger.

“The notifications came early. We were alerted that the power was going to go off,” he said. “The winds were incredibly strong. We were getting debris blowing all over the place.”

PGE patrolled and inspected 1,800 miles of line and equipment. The company says they found damage from wind gusts that topped 50 miles per hour in some areas. PGE also said they feel like they made the right call in shutting off power.

Pacific Power, who turned the lights off for 12,000 customers throughout Marion, Polk, Tillamook, Douglas and Lincoln counties, shared similar sentiments.

“We also did have to make minor wind-related repairs to sections of line that were de-energized during this. So that indicates that this was the right choice to turn off power for safety,” said Drew Hanson with Pacific Power.

Hanson also told KOIN 6 News that power shutoffs could become more normal in the Pacific Northwest, but only if it’s deemed necessary.

“This could be a possibility, but it’s also a measure of last resort and really it’s something that would be used on a case-by-case basis,” he said.

Meanwhile, PGE said, as hot dry summers become the norm, so will preventative outages, as one of their tools in mitigating wildfires. They also plan to underground some lines and harden their current systems.

Kneuven said he hopes power companies continue to use and perfect this tactic because he said having the power out was a small price to pay for the peace of mind.

“I thought PGE did a wonderful job of setting expectations and managing those expectations,” he said.