Wireless sensor networks (WSNs) keep attracting the attention of researchers due to the newly emerging areas of application fueled by the development of inexpensive sensors and advanced communication technologies. A large group of applications - monitoring of pipelines, roads and bridges, as well as recently evolving IoT applications - specifically requires linear topology. Compared to traditional WSNs, these linear wireless sensor networks (LWSN) pose additional challenges in terms of overall delay and energy efficiency. Even though there are numerous and also very successful MAC protocols for WSN, very few of them take into consideration the specifics of linear topologies. Thus our aim is to address these challenges by proposing LINE-MAC, a MAC protocol tailored especially for LWSN. Our simulation results show that LINE-MAC achieves significant improvement in end-to-end delay, energy consumption and packet delivery ratio (PDR) compared to a general, energy and delay efficient MAC protocol for WSN. (C) 2014 The Authors. Published by Elsevier B.V.