There has been a rash of catalytic converter thefts from vehicles in the Northfield, Somers Point, and Upper Township areas of Atlantic and Cape May Counties.

Within the last week, many people have discovered that they are the victims of the crime.

Get our free mobile app

How do you know if your catalytic converter is stolen?

Thefts Of Catalytic Converters Sky Rocket Across The Nation
Getty Images
loading...

That's easy. When you go to start your vehicle, it will make more noise than you've ever heard it make.

What is a catalytic converter?

Thefts Of Catalytic Converters Sky Rocket Across The Nation
Getty Images
loading...

It's part of your vehicle's exhaust system. According to synchrony.com, the purpose of it is "to convert harmful pollutants into less harmful emissions before they even leave a car’s exhaust system."

How do the bad guys remove the catalytic converter?

JK
JK
loading...

Usually with a very fast, high-powered saw. Essentially, they cut it right out - very quickly. In most cases, they can do it very quickly.

Can you drive your car without a catalytic converter?

Thefts Of Catalytic Converters Sky Rocket Across The Nation
Getty Images
loading...

Your neighbors won't be happy!

You can drive it temporarily. It's a good idea if you drive it straight to your mechanic.

Police release photos of the vehicle thought to be involved in the thefts.

New Jersey State Police
New Jersey State Police
loading...

New Jersey State Police have released photos of a suspected vehicle related to the thefts.

Police say these photos were captured on surveillance Monday, November 6th, between 3 and 5 a.m.

Vehicles in our own Townsquare Media office's parking lot were hit as well. Those details are here.

What to do if you're a victim of a similar theft?

New Jersey State Police
New Jersey State Police
loading...

Call your local police department right away.

New Jersey State Police are asking anyone with information on the incidents to contact them. You can do that by calling 609-861-5698. Tips can be anonymous.

SOURCE: New Jersey State Police

LOOK: Best counties to raise a family in New Jersey

Stacker compiled a list of the best counties to raise a family in New Jersey.

Gallery Credit: Stacker

LOOK: Groceries that dropped in price in the Northeast Last Month

Stacker used Bureau of Labor Statistics data to find the grocery items that saw the largest price decreases from August to September in the Northeast.

Gallery Credit: Stacker

More From 97.3 ESPN