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Wireless sensor networks (WSNs) are promising tools to change the way the power grid is monitored and controlled. This paper presents the design, simulation and evaluation of ZigBee WSNs that are used for condition monitoring of delay sensitive data in wind turbines. It also presents an approach to reduce the end-to-end delay and provide service differentiation for sensor nodes that are transmitting delay sensitive data by modifying the existing IEEE 802.15.4 MAC protocol. Therefore, the results presented in this paper will assist in optimizing the operation of the smart grid in terms of near real-time asset monitoring and enhance the entire demand response process.