Two applicances were mobilised after the fire service received reports of a shed alight on Shoreham Beach at 10.33pm, a spokesman said.
But the call was discovered to be a hoax and the crews were stood down, the spokesman said.
The fire service received a further four malicious phonecalls that evening.
In a statement on their Facebook page, a spokesman from Lancing Fire Station wrote: “Last night our control center was contacted regarding a fire, this call saw two pumps mobilised to the reported incident.
“Our operators confirmed that this was a false alarm due to a hoax call so we could return to being available for a potential real emergency.
“Our control center operators were then contacted subjected to more calls of the same nature as well as receiving foul use of language.
“999 should only be used in the event of an emergency.
“Hoax calls cost lives!”