The current study examines the effects of acutely induced laboratory stress on a complex decision-making task, the Waste Water Treatment Simulation. Participants are instructed to follow a certain decision rule according to safety guidelines. Violations of this rule are associated with potential high rewards (working faster and earning more money) but also with the risk of a catastrophe (an explosion). Stress was induced with the Trier Social Stress Test while control participants underwent a non-stress condition. In the simulation task, stressed females broke the safety rule more often than unstressed females: χ2 (1, N = 24) = 10.36, p < 0.001, V = 0.66. In males, no difference between stressed and unstressed participants was observed. We conclude that stress increased the decisions to break the safety rule because stressed female participants focused on the potential high gains while they neglected the risk of potential negative consequences.