Q. In the 2015 and 2012 edition of NFPA 99, 126.96.36.199.3 says, “Service valves shall be placed in the branch piping prior to any zone valve box assembly on that branch.” Does that mean that on each pipe, to each zone valve box, there shall be a valve that will allow the zone valve to be isolated?
A. The paragraph before the one you referenced clarifies the intent.
188.8.131.52.2 states that only one service valve shall be required for each branch off the riser regardless of how many zone valve boxes are installed on that lateral.
My interpretation is that only one service valve is required for each “branch” off the riser. I believe this is the “branch” referred to in 184.108.40.206.3 and that this paragraph is meant to clarify the placement of the service valve in relation to the zone valves, which is “prior to any zone valve boxes on the branch.”