OXFORD — Police, fire and rescue personnel from the towns of Oxford, Norway and Paris set up command at Oxford Plains Speedway on Route 26 Friday morning in anticipation of thousands of fans pouring into the area over the weekend.

Hundreds of campers have been at the site since Monday. The officers will be on hand throughout the weekend, until 8 a.m. Monday, Oxford Police Chief Jonathan Tibbetts said.

Tibbetts, who is in charge of the speedway command site, said he expected everything to run smoothly, including traffic.

“We don’t do any re-routing,” he said of the traffic plans that are laid out to the officers during multiple meetings held well in advance of the event. While some of the plans are kept secret, Tibbetts said motorists can expect traffic to move smoothly throughout the weekend, except on Sunday evening when the 250 race ends and people head out.

Motorists can expect up to an hour delay in getting on their way home at that time, he said.

Tibbetts has been commanding the OPS operation for the past 14 years and has seen some changes in behavior during that time.

“When I started organizing it, it was quite rowdy over there. Through the years, we educated people somewhat on what was allowable,” he said.

The past few years have been largely event-free, except for some fighting and a stolen car. If there are any large-scale problems, the officers will be ready for action, Tibbetts said.

“It’s like we have our own little police department down there,” he said of the officers who work from the York County Command Truck, which comes up to establish the base.

The officers can book prisoners, do detox, bails and other functions out of the command center, Tibbetts said.

The Oxford County Sheriff’s Department is called in on “worst case” scenarios and if extra manpower is needed, he said.

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