PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — Thousands of households woke up in the dark Thursday as winds ramped up and knocked the power out.

Local utility companies are bracing for the winter storm as outages come in.

Portland General Electric is reporting just over 8,500 customers throughout the Willamette Valley are without power just after 7 p.m. That number was as high as almost 13,000 earlier in the day.

PGE said high wind has caused many of the outages. The outages span across the Willamette Valley, with several large outages concentrated in the Portland area. Residents in the Sandy and Estacada areas are also without power.

Pacific Power is dealing with similar wind issues as it works to restore power to nearly 200 customers as of 7 p.m. That number has come down drastically since the morning, when the utility reported more than 1,500 customers across Portland were affected.

In Washington state, Clark Public Utilities lists 1,213 of its customers are without power after 7 p.m. The company has been busy throughout the day, reporting that 1,415 customers have recently had power restored.

PGE has declined several requests for interviews about how it is handling the storm — they generally say they are prioritizing areas with hospitals, water treatment and other critical infrastructure.

Pacific Power told KOIN 6 News their crews are moving relatively quickly in addressing outages. However, they know the real test begins when the ice comes.

“We don’t know exactly where and when the ice will reach that severity that causes outages,” said Tom Gauntt, a spokesperson for Pacific Power.