Plymouth was the capital of Montserrat, a tiny island in the Caribbean. Due to an eruption of the nearby Soufrière Hills Volcano, it was abandoned in 1997, since the pyroclastic surges of the eruption covered the city in mud and lava, making it uninhabitable. The entire south side of the island was abandoned and is now a restricted zone. Most of the people who lived in Plymouth decided not to return to Montserrat after the disaster, and much of its commerce and administration were located there. This disaster crippled the small island severely; 14 years later, the new capital is still not build and the population is less than half of what it was before 1997.