(WENY) -- The TSA released new statistics about the number of guns intercepted at security checkpoints so far this year.

TSA screened 15 million more passengers in the first three months of this year compared to the first three months of last year -- an increase of nearly eight percent. Despite this the number of firearms detected remained nearly the same across both time periods.

In order to travel through airports with a firearm it must be secured in checked luggage and not in a carry-on. It must be packed unloaded and securely locked in a hard-sided case.

When you arrive at the check-in counter to receive your ticket, the firearm must be declared. Firearms remain prohibited in the secure areas of airports and in the passenger cabins of commercial planes.

"The most common excuse we hear is that I forgot I had my gun with me. You've got to be responsible if you own a firearm and responsible gun owner who do know where their guns are at all times. The next most common excuse we hear is that my husband pack my bag or my wife pack my bag. Keep in mind you are the one responsible for the contents of the bag you're bringing to an airport," remarked TSA spokesperson Lisa Farbstein.