Rocketing fuel prices certainly have fleet managers concerned, but a recent survey showed that a lack of qualified drivers is an even more pressing issue. More than three-quarters (77%) of attendees at a recent fleet managers conference said a major shortage of qualified drivers is among the most critical issues facing the U.S. trucking industry, followed closely by rising fuel prices and maintenance costs. Coupled with these is the struggle to find ways to reduce diesel consumption. In addition, 93% of the trucking executives surveyed said they would replace nearly one-quarter of their fleet within the next year, with 72% planning to replace half of their fleet in two or more years. Fueling those decisions are new emission standards that go into effect in 2007. The survey was commissioned by First Fleet Corp., which presented the conference.