David Dunn's late header gave Blackburn a vital point as Aston Villa missed the chance to ease their fears of being dragged into a survival scrap.
Villa dominated before the break and led when Charles N'Zogbia slammed home after Carlos Cuellar's fine solo run.
Blackburn improved after half-time and Shay Given had to keep out a thunderous volley from Morten Gamst Pedersen.
With five minutes left, Rovers' pressure told when Bradley Orr's cross found Dunn to nod home at the far post.
It was a breathless finish to a game that Villa should have wrapped up before the break, such was their dominance.
Kean praises goalkeeper Robinson
The draw means Alex McLeish's men remain 15th and eight points clear of the cluster of sides at the bottom of the table after a run of five Premier League games without a win.
Villa's poor form was not the only reason for their fans' concern ahead of their trip to Ewood Park, with their side having to cope without key strikers Darren Bent, through injury, and Robbie Keane, who has returned to the United States after his loan spell.
But they made the most of a slow start by Blackburn, who saw another protest against owners, the Venky's, and manager Steve Kean outside the ground before kick-off.
Gabriel Agbonlahor brought a couple of early stops from Paul Robinson and it was no surprise when N'Zogbia broke the deadlock after 24 minutes.
BLACKBURN'S DEFENSIVE PROBLEMS
Rovers remain the only team in the top four divisions of English football not to have kept a clean sheet in the league this season, and have now conceded 60 goals in 27 games
Cuellar kept going after picking up the ball on the left flank, cutting inside before feeding the Frenchman, who swivelled to slam an unstoppable shot into the roof of the net.
Blackburn, despite the backing of their fans inside the stadium, remained surprisingly subdued and Villa should have increased their lead before the break when Stephen Ireland's cut-back found N'Zogbia, but this time his effort was pushed away by Robinson.
Rovers were booed off at the break but they were much improved at the start of the second half, following a double change by Kean that saw Marcus Olsson and Dunn replace Mauro Formica and Radosav Petrovic.
Marcus Olsson immediately linked up with his twin brother Martin down the left to send over a cross that only just eluded Yakubu and set the tone for an anxious final 45 minutes for the visitors.
Villa need to be ruthless - McLeish
A rare foray forward saw Stephen Ireland force a fine low stop from Robinson, who also kept out Alan Hutton's follow up without the knowledge that the linesman had already flagged from offside.
But it was Blackburn who were flooding forward, with Scott Dann heading over from Steven Nzonzi's flick on and Junior Hoilett bringing a smart stop from Shay Given before he pushed away Pedersen's stinging effort.
Villa had one final chance to make sure of the points when Agbonlahor's bouncing header was clawed to safety by Robinson.
And Rovers got the draw their persistence deserved when Orr bent in a cross from the right that found Dunn unmarked to head home their equaliser.
Blackburn boss Steve Kean:
"If it wasn't for Paul Robinson's performance in the first half today the game could have been beyond us. He made crucial saves in the first half and played his part in getting us back to our usual standards.
"The first half was probably as poor as we've been for a number of months. But we had a few choice words at half-time and in the second half we were much better.
"We got closer to Villa's midfield because we were miles off it in the first half. I'm just disappointed we didn't get our goal earlier because, if we did, we might have gone on to win it."
Aston Villa manager Alex McLeish:
"We lacked the ruthlessness that has maybe blighted us a bit this season. You could certainly talk about the amount of chances we've passed up in games.
"Charles N'Zogbia could have had a hat-trick. He was looking very dangerous cutting in from wide on the right and he had a chance to put us 2-0 up when Robinson saved point blank.
"We've got to move on and try to build on our performance in the first half. Paul Robinson made some fantastic saves, but in the second half Blackburn bullied us a bit."
Full Time The game is over, as the referee blows his whistle.
Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Andreas Weimann by Martin Olsson. Barry Bannan delivers the ball from the free kick left-footed from right wing.
Marcus Olsson produces a cross, clearance by James Collins.
Outswinging corner taken by Barry Bannan.
Andreas Weimann takes a shot. Bradley Orr gets a block in.
90:00 +0:32 Substitution
Substitution Marc Albrighton leaves the field to be replaced by Andreas Weimann.
Outswinging corner taken from the left by-line by Morten Gamst Pedersen, Grant Hanley produces a header from deep inside the six-yard box which goes wide of the right-hand upright.
Stiliyan Petrov takes a shot. Save by Paul Robinson.
Barry Bannan takes a inswinging corner.
Barry Bannan takes a shot. Paul Robinson makes a save.
Bradley Orr provided the assist for the goal.
84:42 Goal scored
Goal! - David Dunn - Blackburn 1 - 1 A Villa David Dunn finds the net with a headed goal from close in. Blackburn 1-1 Aston Villa.
Outswinging corner taken by Morten Gamst Pedersen, save by Shay Given.
Free kick awarded for a foul by Morten Gamst Pedersen on Stiliyan Petrov. Direct free kick taken by James Collins.
Corner taken by Marc Albrighton from the left by-line, Bradley Orr makes a clearance.
Gabriel Agbonlahor takes a shot. Save made by Paul Robinson.
Centre by Marcus Olsson, clearance made by Stiliyan Petrov.
The ball is sent over by Marcus Olsson, Stiliyan Petrov makes a clearance.
Substitution Barry Bannan joins the action as a substitute, replacing Charles N'Zogbia.
Substitution Chris Herd goes off and Gary Gardner comes on.
The ball is delivered by Martin Olsson, save by Shay Given.
The referee blows for offside. Shay Given restarts play with the free kick.
Morten Gamst Pedersen takes a shot. Shay Given makes a save.
Direct free kick taken by Shay Given.
Booking Morten Gamst Pedersen is cautioned.
Morten Gamst Pedersen gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on James Collins.
David Hoilett takes a shot. Blocked by James Collins. David Dunn takes a shot. Blocked by Carlos Cuellar.
Alan Hutton challenges Marcus Olsson unfairly and gives away a free kick. The free kick is swung in left-footed by Morten Gamst Pedersen.
Header from close range by Scott Dann clears the bar.
Morten Gamst Pedersen fouled by Gabriel Agbonlahor, the ref awards a free kick. Paul Robinson takes the direct free kick.
Shot from outside the penalty box by David Dunn goes wide right of the goal.
Morten Gamst Pedersen produces a cross, clearance by James Collins.
Stiliyan Petrov fouled by David Dunn, the ref awards a free kick. James Collins takes the free kick.
Steven Nzonzi has an effort at goal from outside the penalty box missing to the wide right of the goal.
Alan Hutton is caught offside. Paul Robinson takes the indirect free kick.
Stephen Ireland takes a shot. Save by Paul Robinson.
Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Alan Hutton by Marcus Olsson. Free kick taken by James Collins.
Scott Dann concedes a free kick for a foul on Stephen Warnock. Shay Given takes the free kick.
Marcus Olsson takes a shot. Blocked by Stiliyan Petrov. Outswinging corner taken left-footed by Morten Gamst Pedersen from the left by-line, Alan Hutton manages to make a clearance.
Centre by Martin Olsson.
The second half kicks off.
Substitution Mauro Formica leaves the field to be replaced by David Dunn.
Substitution Marcus Olsson comes on in place of Radosav Petrovic.
45:00 +2:56 Half time
Half Time The referee blows for half time.
David Hoilett produces a right-footed shot from close in which goes wide of the right-hand upright.
David Hoilett takes a shot. Blocked by James Collins.
The assistant referee flags for offside against Stephen Ireland. Indirect free kick taken by Paul Robinson.
Charles N'Zogbia takes a shot. Save by Paul Robinson.
Inswinging corner taken by Marc Albrighton from the left by-line, Chris Herd takes a shot. Steven Nzonzi manages to make a clearance.
Steven Nzonzi challenges Marc Albrighton unfairly and gives away a free kick. Stephen Warnock takes the direct free kick.
Ayegbeni Yakubu sends in a cross, clearance by Carlos Cuellar.
The ball is swung over by Martin Olsson, clearance made by Shay Given.
Stephen Ireland produces a left-footed shot from just outside the penalty box that misses to the left of the goal.
Stiliyan Petrov has an effort at goal from outside the area which goes wide left of the target.
Alan Hutton crosses the ball, clearance by Scott Dann.
Unfair challenge on Gabriel Agbonlahor by Radosav Petrovic results in a free kick. James Collins restarts play with the free kick.
Foul by Chris Herd on Mauro Formica, free kick awarded. Paul Robinson takes the free kick.
Charles N'Zogbia takes a inswinging corner.
Stephen Ireland produces a cross, blocked by Scott Dann.
Stephen Ireland takes a shot. Blocked by Grant Hanley.
Charles N'Zogbia takes a shot. Blocked by Steven Nzonzi.
Marc Albrighton takes a short corner.
Assist by Carlos Cuellar.
23:40 Goal scored
Goal! - Charles N'Zogbia - Blackburn 0 - 1 A Villa Charles N'Zogbia finds the back of the net with a goal from deep inside the penalty box to the top left corner of the goal. Blackburn 0-1 Aston Villa.
Inswinging corner taken left-footed by Morten Gamst Pedersen played to the near post, Stiliyan Petrov makes a clearance.
Effort from outside the area by Gabriel Agbonlahor goes wide right of the goal.
Bradley Orr concedes a free kick for a foul on Marc Albrighton. Stephen Warnock takes the free kick.
Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Morten Gamst Pedersen by Stephen Warnock. Paul Robinson restarts play with the free kick.
The ball is crossed by Marc Albrighton.
Morten Gamst Pedersen takes a shot. Carlos Cuellar gets a block in.
Ayegbeni Yakubu takes a shot. Alan Hutton gets a block in.
Stiliyan Petrov takes a shot. Blocked by Scott Dann.
Stiliyan Petrov takes a shot. Blocked by Grant Hanley.
Marc Albrighton takes a shot. Paul Robinson makes a comfortable save.
Marc Albrighton delivers the ball, clearance made by Bradley Orr.
Short corner taken by Marc Albrighton from the left by-line.
The ball is sent over by Alan Hutton.
Free kick awarded for a foul by Chris Herd on Mauro Formica. Direct free kick taken by Mauro Formica.
Stephen Warnock sends in a cross, blocked by Bradley Orr.
Stephen Ireland sends in a cross, clearance made by Radosav Petrovic.
Corner taken short by Charles N'Zogbia.
Marc Albrighton takes a shot. Grant Hanley gets a block in.
Ayegbeni Yakubu has an effort at goal and missed to the right of the target.
Mauro Formica takes a shot. Save made by Shay Given.
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