A VICTIM of crime, who believes she was targeted because the lights in her street were switched off, was left without transport for her children and disabled partner.
Last Thursday night, the exhaust on Tracey Allen’s car was stolen while it was parked outside her family home in Prince Charles Avenue, Bury St Edmunds.
The mother of three has lived at the same address for 18 years and says she has always parked on the road in front of her house without any problems.
Since the theft, which left her family immobile for two days and cost nearly £100 to fix, she has started parking on her front lawn, a situation she says could have been avoided if Suffolk County Council did not turn street lights off between midnight-5.30am.
“No-one’s going to rob an exhaust from a car while the street lights are on,” she said, adding: “They (the council) need to rethink what times they’re doing this and the affect it’s going to have on people.
“I certainly don’t think it’s a good idea to turn them off at night when we’ve got the pubs and clubs kicking out – I just feel there’s going to be a lot more assaults.”
Mrs Allen’s partner, Peter Hawkins, is registered disabled because of a variety of ailments including osteoporosis – a bone disease that leads to increased risk of fracture – chronic asthma and heart problems.
In April, Mr Hawkins was rushed to hospital and Mrs Allen’s fears about the ‘switch off’ are compounded by her concern about how she would cope in an emergency, with it being ‘pitch black’ outside.
Karen Mayhew, chief executive of Havebury Housing, which rents to Mrs Allen, said: “Havebury will consider any requests for an outside light from tenants with a disability following an initial referral from Adult Community Services at Suffolk County Council.”