A suspected Second World War bomb thought to contain up to 1,000lb (450kg) of explosives which caused the evacuation of 55 people was actually a disused fuel tank, police said.
The discovery of the “bomb” on a building site shortly before 3pm on Wednesday in Peacehaven, Sussex, led to the closure of schools and roads.
Temporary accommodation was provided for those who were forced to leave their homes, with Sussex Police saying dozens of people were being housed in rest centres in the town.
The Sussex Police announced on Thursday morning that “Explosive Ordnance Disposal experts have now identified the suspect WW2 bomb in #Peacehaven as a fuel tank.”
And Superintendent Jane Derrick said: “I’m sure everyone is relieved that this incident has been safely resolved, and I’d like to thank everyone affected for their patience and understanding.
“In such situations safety is always paramount. Unfortunately no one was able to determine exactly what we were dealing with until painstaking work by bomb disposal experts throughout the night confirmed there was no danger.”