A 'LOVING' mother-of-six from Blackburn has been killed in coach crash in Saudi Arabia.

A Hashim Travel spokesman said a petrol tanker collided with the coach travelling from Mecca to Medina near Al Khalas, killing four people on Saturday.

The grandmother-of-13, in her 60s, has been named locally as Raj Begum Hussain.

The group was on a trip booked through the Blackburn firm, based in Audley Range.

A family spokesman said: "We are deeply saddened to hear the tragic news of the death of Raj Begum Hussain.

"She was a loving mother of six and grandmother of 13.

"She will be sorely missed by all family and friends.

"We would like to thank the whole community for their condolences and support at this difficult time."

Three people from Preston, an elderly woman and her adult son, along with an elderly man, were also killed and a man from Accrington was also travelling on the coach.

Gulfaraz Zaman, the director of the Blackburn company, said there were 18 people on board.

He said: “There was a crash between the coach and a petrol tanker.

“The coach driver said they were travelling in the opposite direction to the petrol tanker when a car overtook the tanker.

"He had to move in to the side of the road a little to let it through but then the petrol tanker hit the coach which caught fire.

“There were 18 people on the coach which was travelling back from Mecca towards Medina.

“It took place on a main road.

“Four people have passed away, one from Blackburn and three from Preston.

“The woman from Blackburn was aged in her 60s.

“There was also a man on the coach from Accrington.”

Other passengers on board the coach were from Birmingham and the West Midlands.

Leader of Blackburn with Darwen Council, Cllr Mohammed Khan, said: “I went to see the family yesterday, it was a very sad occasion.

“It was so sad to hear a woman from Blackburn, and three people from Preston had died in the crash. I know the Blackburn family very well.

“My thoughts and condolences are with the family and friends of everyone who died.”

The driver of the petrol tanker is also said to have died, while other coach passengers were treated for fractures.

Family members of the victims are planning to fly out to Saudi Arabia in the next 24 hours.

Abdul Qureshi, CEO of Lancashire Council of Mosques, said: “This is a very sad occasion.

“We pray that god blesses them and their family.

“They were on a very, very good journey.

“We will be there for the family for any support and guidance they need.”

A Foreign Office spokesman said: “We are supporting the British families of those who have died and those injured following a serious road traffic accident near the town of Al Khalas, Saudi Arabia.”

Al Khalas is a settlement roughly 30 miles north of the holy site of Mecca.