Norman commenced his career with Regent Petroleum and Texaco Overseas Petroleum Tankship Co. as marine engineer involved with the operation, maintenance and repair of steam turbine plant, generators, and other auxiliaries, as well as damage repairs to hull, machinery, and new vessels under construction.
Norman joined a major composite insurer to provide engineering support to offices in the UK and overseas, where he advised on such diverse matters as power generation, boilers, and pressure vessels used in chemical, pharmaceutical, food, manufacturing, and paper industries. He also represented Insurers interests on British Standards committees.
In 1992, Norman joined a firm of international loss adjusters where he gained experience investigating a wide variety of machinery breakdown / accidental damage claims, including liability investigations involving steam and gas turbines. He also carried out condition and operating procedure surveys for Insurers. More recently, Norman formed Norman Cobley Associates, a consultancy practice set up to advise Insurers and Adjusters on engineering claims.
- Collapse of grain silos – Sweden
- Damage to suspension bridge cables – France
- Explosion and collapse of cement kiln filter – Ecuador
- Collapse of cement kiln furnace – England
- Fire damage to British Steel construction plant – Wales
- Damage to tower crane – England
- Collapse with fatalities of 1200 tonne mobile crane – Brazil
- Collapse of alumina refinery jetty due to Hurricane – Jamaica
- Construction defects in energy from waste boiler – UK
- Delay Liquidated Damages insurance surveys – India (power station) and USA (railway project)