Does seismic surveying cause earthquakes or damage to property?
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Seismic data collection does not cause earthquakes. Unless you are standing quite close, within a few feet of the equipment, you will not notice the vibrations from either the weight drop or the vibrating weight.
The risk of any damage comes from placing the weight on top of a shallowly buried pipe or cable. Part of the work prior to the start of the data collection is to identify the buried utilities in the data collection area. The location of these utilities within the public rights-of-way is generally well known, so the risk of damage is quite low. In the unlikely event any damage occurs from the work, the contractor is fully insured and will correct the problem quickly.