About Us — Rock Engineers

Wyllie & Norrish Rock Engineers is a specialist engineering company working in the fields of:

Rock Slopes Landslides Tunnels Blasting Foundations Rock Falls

The company principals, Duncan Wyllie and Norm Norrish, have a total of 80 years experience in applied rock mechanics, and aim to bring innovative, timely and economic solutions to projects involving excavations in rock.


Duncan C. Wyllie

Duncan C. Wyllie is a graduate of the University of California, Berkeley, the University of New South Wales, Australia and the University of London, and has a Ph. D. from the Univeristy of British Columbia in Canada. He specializes in rock engineering and has worked in this field for nearly 50 years. During this time, he has been involved in a wide variety of railway, highway and industrial development projects in North and South America, Asia and the Middle East. Typical assignments include the design and construction of slopes and tunnels, foundations of bridges and dams, and the study of landslides. On many of these projects, the design and evaluation of blasting procedures was an important part of the work.

One of Duncan’s specialties is the assessment of rock fall hazards, and the design and implementation of remedial measures; he carried out the initial development of a widely used hazard rating system for highways in mountainous terrain. He has also worked in the mining industry in the design of open pit slopes, underground support and tailings dams.

Duncan has lectured widely, conducted training courses in rock slope engineering, and has written a number of textbooks on rock mechanics. He is the author of the books Foundations on Rock (1992 and 1999 editions), Rock Slope Engineering (5th edition, 2017), Rock Fall Engineering (2014), and is a co-author of Landslides – Investigation and Mitigation (Transportation Research Board, 1996).


Norman I. Norrish

Norman I. Norrish has more than 30 years of experience in the application of rock mechanics to mining, transportation, and civil construction projects. His rock slope engineering experience includes site investigations, design, hazard evaluation, remedial stabilization, and construction monitoring for projects on behalf of state and Federal highway agencies throughout the western United States. He has managed geotechnical investigations, design and construction rehabilitation projects for numerous rail, highway and pedestrian tunnels ranging in length from tens of meters to several kilometers. Rock foundation projects have included abutment stability evaluations for rail and highway bridges, stabilization design for an unstable railroad bridge pier founded on steeply dipping metamorphic bedrock, and footing and shaft design for a highway viaduct on the Oregon Coast.

Norm has been a lecturer to more than forty State Departments of Transportation for a two-day course on rock slope design, excavation and stabilization, sponsored by the National Highway Institute. He contributed significantly to Transportation Research Board Special Report 247 "Landslides: Investigation and Mitigation," and to TRB Report "Rockfall Characterization and Control." He has worked extensively throughout North America, South America and Asia. This technical expertise combined with his senior management experience has provided Norm with the diverse background necessary to manage complex, multi-disciplinary geotechnical projects.


We are located in Seattle, Washington and Vancouver, BC, Canada.
If you have any questions, please contact us.

Wyllie & Norrish Rock Engineers Ltd. | Canada

1400–750 West Pender St, Vancouver, BC V6C 2T8

(604) 418-4617 | dwyllie@wnrockeng.com

Wyllie & Norrish Rock Engineers Inc. | United States

704-228th Ave NE, #773, Sammamish, WA 98074

(206) 790-3476 | nnorrish@wnrockeng.com