The police chief of Pakistan's troubled Baluchistan province has narrowly escaped a suicide attack that killed at least six and wounded 46 others.

Officials said Inspector General Mushtaq Sukhera had just entered his residence in Quetta when a suicide bomber in a vehicle laden with explosives blew himself up outside the house.

At least two police officers, three paramilitary soldiers and one passerby were killed.

Residents said the explosion was so loud that it was heard all over the city.

Baluchistan, which borders Afghanistan and Iran, is plagued by an Islamist militancy.