The Pentagon on Tuesday confirmed its $320 million floating pier to Gaza, which President Joe Biden announced with great fanfare during the State of the Union address, has broken into pieces and will be dismantled for at least a week as it is repaired.

Deputy Pentagon Press Secretary Sabrina Singh told reporters at a press conference four U.S. Army vessels attached to “motorized sections” of the pier broke free on Saturday due to a loss of power and washed ashore.

Singh said “high sea states” and a “North African weather system” caused the vessels to lose power. One of the vessels was recovered near Ashkelon, and a second one will be recovered within 24 hours, she said. The remaining two were estimated to be recovered within 48 hours, she said.

She said the pier will be dismantled, hauled to Ashdod, repaired and reinstalled, which will take at least a week. She said the Pentagon was abiding by Biden’s directive not to have American “boots on the ground,” and that the Israeli Navy was helping to recover the lost vessels.

However, when asked if soldiers on the loose vessels had gotten off onto the shore at any point, Singh said she believed “most” of them were able to remain on their vessels and “still are currently on them.”

A U.S. Army landing craft is seen beached in Ashdod on Sunday, May 26, 2024, after being swept by wind and current from the temporary humanitarian pier in the Gaza Strip. (AP Photo/Tsafrir Abayov)

She also revealed that another piece of the pier that was anchored into the coast of Gaza had broken off on Tuesday, damaging the pier and necessitating its repair.

“Therefore, over the next 48 hours, the Trident Pier will be removed from its anchored position on the coast and towed back to Ashdod, where U.S. Central Command will conduct repairs. The rebuilding and repairing of the pier will take at least over a week and will — and following completion, will need to be re-anchored to the coast of Gaza,” she said.

She claimed that the pier was not a failure, and “proved highly valuable” in delivering aid to the people of Gaza. She did not have an updated cost estimate as to how much it would cost to repair and reinstall the pier.

“To date, over 1,000 metric tons have been delivered from the pier to the marshaling area for onward delivery by humanitarian organizations and into the hands of Palestinians,” she said.

Three service members were injured while part of the pier mission from non-combat injuries. She said two had minor injuries, and one remained in critical condition.

Singh said the pier would be reattached and that “hopefully” weather conditions would not hinder it anymore.

“Look, I can’t predict the weather, but we believe that given the time of year, we will be able to re-anchor this pier and it will be able to be operational, and hopefully, weather conditions won’t hinder it anymore. But we always make assessments based on, you know, environmental factors, and if we need to, you know, adjust, we will. But we hope that it’ll be fully operational with just a little over a week,” she said.