After two months of summer vacation, Fort Knox Community Schools begin the 2017-2018 school year Aug. 7.

Wendy Steinhoff, a Fort Knox safety specialist, said when children are crossing in front of vehicles they need to maintain eye contact with the driver so they are seen.

Drivers should also be more vigilant when school begins because they will see children in a new area such as Old Ironsides Avenue, the location of the new Kingsolver Elementary School.

The start of the new year also means more children walking or riding their bikes to school. And that means drivers need to take extra precautions while driving on post.

"They should be riding (or walking) with other kids and not by themselves," she said. "If they are small children they should ride on the sidewalk and not in the road (and wear) bright clothing for (visibility). Because the new school is surrounded by office buildings where people are coming to work early around the same time school begins there will be more traffic than normal and parents dropping of their children should be aware of other children walking or riding to school."

She added that in the area where sidewalks are located there are also crosswalks and children need to use those when crossing the street.

If children are riding bikes to school they must wear a helmet and use hand signals. Steinhoff pointed out that parents should inspect their child's bike to make sure brakes are working properly and reflectors are visible.

"Don't buy bikes (children) have to grow into, and make sure they aren't (riding and holding) a backpack (in their hand)," she said. "Parents should teach children the basic rules, make sure helmets fit correctly and have a chin strap. Most accidents are head injuries. Make sure they don't have earphones or listening to their phones (while riding)."

Steinhoff said drivers should make sure they stop before making a right turn. And children should avoid taking short cuts, walking through creek beds or taller areas of grass.

Drivers should use more precaution as school begins and keep distance between vehicles, said Steinhoff. They should also pay attention to the posted speed limits, especially in the school zone. Lt. Jacob Terrell, the traffic supervisor with the Directorate of Emergency Services, said the speed limit on Old Ironsides in front of Kingsolver Elementary School will be 20 mph. The speed limit in front of Fort Knox High School changes to 15 mph Monday through Friday from 7 to 7:30 a.m.; 2:30 to 3 p.m. Monday through Wednesday and Friday; and 1:15 to 1:50 p.m. Thursdays.

"If traffic is backed up going into the school (remain) patient and don't try to go around it because there might be a child coming out," explained Steinhoff. "Parents need to make sure they leave in plenty of time so they are not in a hurry. They need to drop kids in the (correct) area."