A MOTHER of three who died after colliding with a fire engine was driving without a valid licence, an inquest heard.

Martha Gakonde, 39, of Whythefield, Basildon, had just dropped her daughter off at school in Billericay when the tragic crash took place on Broadmayne.

As she switched her gold Toyota Yaris from the left lane to the right lane of the dual-carriageway at 9am on September 9 last year, Mrs Gakonde drove into the path of a fire engine on its way to save a child trapped in a car.

She died of multiple injuries 25 minutes later.

During the second day of an inquest into her death it was revealed that Mrs Gakonde only had a provisional licence.

Her devastated husband, John Njuguna, wept as coroner Caroline Beasley-Murray recorded a verdict of accidental death.